Comcast, Boston Celtics close to an extension


Comcast SportsNet New England has the rights to broadcast games of one of the NBA’s spotlight franchises, the Boston Celtics – and according to reports, it’s about to sign a deal that will keep them on CSNNE for the foreseeable future and give the team a stake in the network.

According to SportsBusiness Daily, the Celtics currently receive somewhere between $15M-$20M annually for broadcast rights. That number, said to be low for a top franchise, is expected to increase significantly.

Additionally, the Celtics will be a piece of CSNNE. The agreement extends the bond between the two entities for 20 years.

According to SBD, any media deal will have to be run by the NBA for approval. It is said that the league will want a chance to examine and “re-set” the deal after ten years.

It is expected that the deal will be front-loaded, with steep initial increases in rights fees in the earlier years that will then level off.

SBD says the stake offer not only cements the bond between Comcast and the teams to which it offers them – it also prevents the team from creating its own competing regional sports network.