Cubs partnership could mark the start of Sinclair’s push into sports programming

Big news: The Chicago Cubs and Sinclair Broadcast Group are partnering to launch a new network that will exclusively broadcast the team’s games.

The new network is launching in 2020 and will mark the first time in 70+ years (1948) that at least a portion of the Cubs games will not air on local broadcast TV.

Current deal: NBC Sports Chicago gets $4.20/subscriber/month which is split between the Bulls, Cubs, White Sox, and Blackhawks.

New deal: The new network plans to charge ≈ $5.00/subscriber/month.

Flashback #1: Sources: Cubs To Go Own Way In TV Venture

The Cubs will get paid $750K per game next year for TV rights.

How much more could they make? How about 3X more! The Dodgers make ≈$2M per game in local broadcast rights through SportsNet LA.

Flashback #2: The bids are in for RSN sale

Monthly subscriber fees for Fox’s priciest RSNs:
YES Network — $6.37
Fox Sports Detroit — $5.84
Fox Sports Arizona — $4.84
Fox Sports Ohio — $4.07
Fox Sports Wisconsin — $3.22

Flashback #3: The Dodgers Are on a Roll but Fans Remain in the Dark Amid Cable-TV Dispute

The Dodgers are guaranteed $8.35B over 25 years from Charter Communications.

That breaks down to an average of $334M/year!

In order to break even, the Network needs to make $1,988 from every pay-TV subscriber in the region or an average of $80/subscriber/year.

More deals: Sinclair Broadcast Group is also in the running for the 22 RSNs that Major League Baseball is selling.

Video: MLB bides for Fox’s Regional Sports Networks

More: Fox RSN sale grows more confusing as Angels owner eyes several networks


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