The move is likely motivated by the Comcast unit’s goal to enhance its new streaming service, Peacock, which launched in 2020. The elimination of NBCSN would likely push a lot of the company’s live sports, including NHL and English Premier League games, onto Peacock and the USA Network, another NBC-owned channel.
NBC has already begun telling it distributors about the plans, Sportico sister publication Variety reported Friday.
NBC’s sports partners include the Olympics, the NHL, EPL, NASCAR and Tour de France. It’s unclear how Comcast plans to divvy those rights up between its remaining networks and Peacock.
NBC’s relationship with the NHL may be of particular note here. Their current deal expires at the end of the season, and negotiations have already begun on the next set of rights. NBC has told the NHL that it will show games on its broadcast channel, USA Network and Peacock, according to Sports Business Journal, which first reported the news.
The network will remain operational through the Summer Olympics in Tokyo later this year, should they happen.