Senators Sign 12-Year Deal With Bell Media For Local Radio, TV Broadcast Rights
The Senators today announced a "massive 12-year deal for the club’s radio and broadcast rights," and the "winner of the bidding war is Bell Media," according to Bruce Garrioch of the OTTAWA SUN. It is "believed the Senators currently get approximately" C$7M per season for their broadcast rights. The new deal will "allow the club to earn significantly more from its local broadcast package than it has in the past." After Sportsnet outbid Bell Media by paying C$5.2B for national TV rights to the NHL, this decision "doesn’t come as any major surprise." While the current TV rights are held by Sportsnet and radio games are on TSN-owned CFGO-AM, "both agreements expire at the end of the season." The timing "could not be more perfect for the Senators." Next season, TV games will be shown on TSN in English and RDS in French. The French-language radio broadcasts on Ottawa-based CJFO-FM "are not expected to change." This deal "covers 50 games per season." It is "believed the Senators would like play-by-play man Dean Brown and partner Denis Potvin to remain in place but TSN has the final say on talent" (OTTAWA SUN, 1/29). In Ottawa, James Gordon notes TSN already holds local TV broadcast rights for the Canadiens and Jets. Sportsnet's national deal in Canada "came as a surprise blow to TSN, which has built a strong brand around hockey coverage and has generally done an excellent job with the product" (OTTAWA CITIZEN, 1/29).