The NLL, a professional indoor lacrosse league, is coming to ESPN. The two parties have struck a massive multi-year deal.
The National Lacrosse League is coming to ESPN.
In a Tuesday press release, the professional indoor league announced it has struck a multi-year broadcast rights deal with ESPN. The deal will provide both ESPN and the ESPN+ streaming service with U.S. and international media rights (outside Canada) to broadcast NLL games live.
The NLL announces that all games will be on some sort of ESPN network or ESPN platform.
🚨 BREAKING NEWS 🚨
@espn acquires U.S and international media rights to broadcast NLL games. The multi-year, multi-platform agreement is the most extensive in the NLL’s 35 year history 📺
— NLL (@NLL) October 26, 2021
“We are so proud, honored and excited to work with ESPN and ESPN+ in this unprecedented landmark announcement for the NLL,” NLL Commissioner Nick Sakiewicz stated in the press release. “Never before in the 35-year history of the league have fans, sponsors, teams and players had this type of access and exposure across the United States. While we, our sport and the industry continue to focus on digital native fans, we will also have the benefit of expanded reach through live distribution on ESPN linear networks. We’ve been steadily building on our media strategy and towards this kind of distribution over the last few years and are excited about the momentum an announcement like this generates heading into NLL Faceoff Weekend, December 3-4.”
“We’re thrilled to reach this new multi-year rights agreement with the National Lacrosse League, adding to our already extensive commitment to the sport of lacrosse on ESPN platforms,” ESPN Senior Director of Programming and Acquisitions Dan Margulis said in the release. “The NLL features elite players competing in an exciting and fast-paced game that we look forward to showcasing across ESPN and ESPN+ in the years ahead.”
The NLL, which is a form of box lacrosse, was founded in 1986 and held its inaugural season in 1987.
There are currently 15 teams, with the most recent champion being the Calgary Roughnecks in 2019.
The 2020 season was suspended and then the playoffs were eventually canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Complications related to the pandemic then canceled the 2021 season.