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The End Of NBCSN

NBCUniversal will shutter its NBCSN sports network, and move some of its top sports properties to the USA network in a cost saving move that hopes to boost the economics of the network Variety has learned.


Photo by Fringer Cat on Unsplash

NBCUniversal has told its distributors it intends to shut down NBCSN at the end of 2021, according to a person familiar with the matter. This means that fans of big NBC sports franchises like the NHL and Premier League will have to follow them to a new home. USA is not going to become an all-sports network, this person cautioned, but might function more like WarnerMedia’s TNT, which has built a durable franchise out of its rights to air National Basketball Association games, does for that media company.

It remained unclear whether the move would affect NBC Sports employees; the division recently experienced staffing cuts as part of a restructuring at NBCUniversal as it grapples with the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

USA has long be powered by WWE RAW and in the current era, sports may be more essential to maintaining the health of a traditional general-entertainment outlet like USA. Cable networks have suffered as audiences move to streaming-video hubs for the sorts of high-caliber scripted series that had long been a staple of cable. Even as they place more emphasis on their own streaming hubs, big media outlets like NBCUniversal, Disney and others need to maintain the large, live audiences that advertisers and cable and satellite distributors crave. Sports and news programming continues to draw those crowds.

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Nicholas Durst

Nicholas Durst is a sports media professional who has worked as an on-air personality and producer with the Brooklyn Cyclones, Bleacher Report, MSG Networks, WFAN Radio and MTV. He has experience in TV, radio, social/digital media, short-form and live video across sports and entertainment. He is also a NCAA Division II broadcaster for CSI SportsNet. Nicholas hosts You Know I'm Right, right here on Follow him on twitter @Nick_Durst

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