NBC Sports Group
|Predecessor||Comcast Sports Group|
|Headquarters||Stamford, Connecticut, United States|
|Mark Lazarus (chairman)|
NBC Sports Group is a division of NBCUniversal that is responsible for NBC Sports' media properties, encompassing the NBC television network's sports division as well as day-to-day operation of the company's sports-oriented cable networks and other properties such as NBC Sports Radio.
The unit was formed when Comcast transferred the operations of the properties in its existing Comcast Sports Group unit – which included the regional sports network chain Comcast SportsNet, Versus and Golf Channel, after the company's acquisition of a majority share in NBCUniversal in February 2011. Plans originally called for the Comcast SportsNet channels to be rebranded under the NBC Sports banner as well, however these plans have since been shelved. However, the networks would adopt some graphical elements from the new NBC Sports design. Mark Lazarus, formerly the head of Turner Entertainment Group, was named President, NBC Sports Cable Group. Comcast Sports Group president Jon Litner assumed the role of president of VERSUS and SportsNet, while the Golf Channel got its own president in former NBC Sports executive vice president Mike McCarley. A president of programming at NBC Sports and Versus was named John Miller, executive vice president, NBC Sports. Dick Ebersol continued as NBC Sports Group Chairman.
In May 2011, Lazarus took over for Ebersol as chairman of the group. The group made a few big rights deal since then adding an extension to its Olympic contract from 2014 out to 2020, Major League Soccer and renewed PGA Tour and “Sunday Night Football”. In June 2011, NBC Sports Group purchased back the Alli Sports share held by MTV Networks Music Group in June 2011 and previously sold by NBC Sports to them in 2008. On January 1, 2012, Versus was renamed NBC Sports Network.
On March 18, 2013, nearly all of the operations for NBC Sports and NBCSN began to be based out of a purpose-built facility in Stamford, Connecticut. The move was made mainly to take advantage of tax credits given by the state of Connecticut, which NBC has taken advantage of previously with the daytime talk shows of its sister broadcast syndication division.
Telemundo Deportes, a dedicated Hispanic sports production unit, was also announced by Joe Uva, Chairman of NBCUniversal Hispanic Group, and chairman Mark Lazarus at May 2015 Upfronts. Telemundo Deportes was also in process of moving to the NBC Sports Group facility in Stamford.
NBC Sports Group formed NBC Sports Films in 2015 for long form sports documentaries for the sports group's platforms. The first film was Center of Attention: The Unreal Life of Derek Sanderson which was broadcast on NBC Sports Network June 8 after the Stanley Cup Final Game 3.
On October 22, 2015, it was announced that Universal Sports Network would close down on November 16, 2015, and that NBC Sports would inherit the network's portfolio of sports rights for its own networks and channels. The Group launched two channels just for the 2016 Olympic games, NBC Olympic Basketball and NBC Olympic Soccer.
NBC Sports streaming technology unit will become a standalone unit within the group per an April 2016 report by Sports Business Daily. The unit's first client is reported as the upcoming Olympic Channel. The unit and service was named Playmaker Media in May 2016 and exists within NBC Sports Digital. NBC News is expected to use Playmaker for the 2016 general election.
In June 2016, the group launched the NBC Sports Gold, an over-the-top streaming service. It debuted with a Cycling Pass, featuring several UCI road cycling races. In April 2017, a Track and Field Pass was launched, featuring IAAF and USA Track & Field meetings, a Rugby Pass featuring Premiership Rugby, and a Pro Motocross Pass featuring the AMA Motocross Championship. A Premier League pass was added in June 2017, and was promptly criticized by fans. The service is available on the website, and through apps for iOS, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Chromecast. All passes except the Pro Motocross Pass are only available in the United States.
- Golf Channel
- Golf Films
- Telemundo Deportes, cross-conglomerate unit with NBCUniversal Telemundo
- NBC Sports
- NBC Sports Digital - consists of the online operations (the groups' websites and apps) plus:
- NBC Sports Films
- NBC Sports Regional Networks
- NBC Sports Ventures LLC
- NBC Sports Radio
- Alli Sports (Alli, Alliance of Action Sports, LLC): Reebok Spartan Race, Lucas Oil Pro Motocross, Red Bull Signature Series
- Olympic Channel
- David Goetzl (May 4, 2011). "NBC Sports Brand Going Local". MediaPost. Retrieved May 6, 2011.
- Wayne Friedman (May 9, 2011). "NBC Steps Up Branding For Comcast Sports Nets". MediaPost. Retrieved May 10, 2011.
- John Ourand. "SBJ: Exit Versus, enter the NBC Sports Network". The Sporting News. Retrieved August 2, 2011.
- Joshua L. Weinstein (February 2, 2011). "Mark Lazarus to Head NBC Sports Group's Executive Team". The Wrap. Retrieved October 6, 2012.
- Sandomir, Richard (December 18, 2011). "More Low-Key Than His Predecessor, NBC Sports Chief Still Aims High". New York Times. Retrieved August 22, 2016.
- "NBC buys back Dew Tour stake from MTV". Sports Business Journal. American City Business Journals. June 20, 2011. p. 3. Retrieved March 9, 2012.
- Fernadez, Bob. "Goodbye Versus, hello NBC Sports Network". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved August 1, 2011.
- Michael Heistand (March 13, 2013). "NBC to air MLS marathon in new digs". USA Today. Gannett Company. Retrieved March 13, 2013.
- Petski, Denise. "NBCUniversal Hispanic Group Unveils CultureFirst, NBC Deportes, Telemundo & NBC Universo 2015–16 Lineup, More". Deadline. Retrieved May 12, 2014.
- Finn, Chad (May 27, 2015). "NBC Sports Films will debut with hour-long documentary on Derek Sanderson". Boston Globe. Retrieved August 19, 2016.
- Hipes, Patrick (October 21, 2015). "Universal Sports Network Being Shuttered By NBCU". Deadline.com. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
- Stoller, Kristin (August 18, 2016). "NBC Sports takes on first Summer Olympics". Kansas City Star. The Hartford Courant. Retrieved August 18, 2016.
- Ourand, John (April 28, 2016). "Sources: NBC Sports Competing With MLBAM, Turner On Streaming". Sports Business Daily. American City Business Journals. Retrieved August 18, 2016.
- Baumgartner, Jeff (May 23, 2016). "NBC Sports Digital Launches ‘Playmaker Media’". Multichannel. NewBay Media. Retrieved August 19, 2016.
- Are NBC’s over-the-top packages, including the new $70 track one, a vision of the future? - Andrew Bucholtz, Awful Announcing, 12 April 2017
- NBC Sports Gold Adds Passes for Rugby, Pro Motocross - Troy Dreier, Sports Video, 1 May 2017
- "About NBC Sports Group". NBC Sports Group Press Box. NBC Sports Group. Retrieved August 19, 2016.
- "Rob Simmelkjaer". NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com. NBC Sports Group. Retrieved August 23, 2016.