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Sky and ESPN 'in talks over NBA rights'

Thursday, November 29th 2012 by Nigel Adie
NBA, ESPN and Sky in talks over live basketball rights

Live NBA action could be returning to British screens soon.

Sky and ESPN are thought to be in talks with the NBA over the possibility of bringing live coverage of the basketball league back to British screens.

ESPN held the UK TV rights to the competition last season, but the deal expired before the new campaign got underway earlier this month.

David Stern, the 70-year-old commissioner of the NBA, told the Daily Mail that the organisation is in discussion with Sky regarding "more regular scheduling of our games".

An ESPN spokesman added that the US broadcaster is also holding talks with the basketball league and hopes to be able to continue its coverage of the sport in the UK.

"[We] remain committed to helping the game of basketball grow here as we are in dozens of countries around the world," he added.

Mr Stern is keen to tie up a deal as soon as possible in a bid to capitalise on the popularity of the sport at London 2012, which he described as "a perfect way to showcase basketball".

Although ESPN is not currently broadcasting NBA matches, it does hold the exclusive rights to screen the 2012-13 NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) basketball season on TV and online.

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