NHL Extends European Reach With More TV Deals

NHL Bruins Lightning 2011
Brian Babineau/NHL via Getty Images

BOSTON, MA - MAY 27: Dominic Moore #19 of the Tampa Bay Lightning skates with the puck against Zdeno Chara #33 of the Boston Bruins in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on May 27, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.

The North American pro hockey league has signed more regional broadcast deals with Fox Sports, Setanta Sports, Canal Plus Sports, Nova Sports, among others.

TORONTO – The National Hockey League has extended its European reach post-ESPN America with separate regional broadcast deals for U.K./Ireland, Czech Republic, Germany and Austria, among other new territories.

Nova Sport has grabbed the rights to show live NHL games in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, while Premier Sports will air pro hockey games in the UK, and Setanta Sports has the rights for Ireland.

Elsewhere, Sport TV secured rights for Portugal, and Canal Plus Sports has the free-to-air, pay and cable/satellite rights for France, including the online rights for the next five seasons.

Canal Plus Sports also negotiated the NHL rights for the next five seasons in Monaco, French-speaking Switzerland, Sub Saharan Africa and other French overseas territories.

U.S. players have also got on board the NHL bandwagon overseas, with Fox Sports grabbing the free-to-air, pay, cable/satellite and online rights for the next three seasons in the Middle East.

And ESPN, which previously held the European rights for the NHL, will now show live NHL games in pan-European countries and Sub-Saharan Africa, including Germany, Belgium, Austria, Italy and the Netherlands.

After ESPN lost the European rights at the end of last year, Medge Consulting and Advisers Media International in July acquired the international media rights for the NHL, and started to resell them on in Europe.

Medge Consulting last month unveiled a separate Scandinavian broadcast deal with Modern Times Group that will see every pro hockey league game air live on TV, mobile and broadband.