The NBA and YouTube announced a deal to stream live more than 350 D-League games during the 2012-13 season, both through a dedicated YouTube channel and through a video player on NBA.com.
From the official release:
“As a result of today’s announcement, the NBA D-League, the NBA’s official minor league, will feature the most live games on YouTube by a major professional sports league.”
“The NBA’s latest initiative with YouTube marks another milestone in our partnership and a great way to tip off the 12th season of the NBA Development League,” said NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver. “By turning to our longtime partner, YouTube, we are able to bring the NBA D-League to basketball fans around the world, further expanding the league’s growth and showcasing future NBA stars.”
“Throughout the season, NBA D-League fans won’t miss a moment of live regular season action as all of the league’s games will be available nationwide either online; on the NBA D-League Center Court mobile app – the league’s free mobile application providing fans with access to NBA D-League content on the Android Market and the App Store; or on CBS Sports Network and NBA TV, the league’s national television partners.
“In addition, fans will be able to access the live games on the NBA D-League YouTube channel via all of the league’s 16 team web sites. They can also access archived versions of the live games to view on demand through the YouTube channel and the league’s web site shortly after the conclusion of the contests.”
The NBA Development League has had a hard time attracting hardcore fans of its own, for a variety of reasons. The teams are almost exclusively located in very small markets, the talent level of the players fluctuates wildly, players come and go to and from teams erratically throughout the season, and it wasn’t always easy to find out when and where to watch.
The league has taken a big step to eliminate that last issue, and more basketball available to watch for free online can only help to increase its fan base.