MSG Networks is set to announce new details of its upcoming direct-to-consumer streaming offering Wednesday as teams continue responding to seismic changes in how games are distributed locally.
MSG+ will launch this summer, charging $30 per month or $310 per year for access to all MSG-produced Knicks, Rangers, Islanders, Devils and Sabres games, plus 24/7 access to the company’s linear channel content. The platform will also sell single games for $10 each, in a first for regional networks.
MSG+ will be available to fans who live in areas where MSG’s channels are available. The timing of the launch will allow the service to roll out ahead of the next NBA and NHL seasons.
“The introduction of MSG+ this summer will be a significant milestone for our company and will offer a mix of subscription options for fans who do not subscribe to a traditional, bundled pay television subscription,” MSG Networks president and CEO Andrea Greenberg said in a statement. “MSG+ will also provide significant value for our participating traditional distribution partners by offering access at no additional cost to their subscribers who receive our networks.”
Many regional sports network owners are building streaming operations to offset declining cable revenues and improve access for cord-cutters. In February, Madison Square Garden Entertainment (NYSE: MSGE) reported a 10.5% year-over-year drop in MSG Networks’ subscriber base.
Boston’s New England Sports Network and the Bally Sports networks have already launched subscription options, with Boston’s option coming in at the same $30-per-month rate for its Red Sox and Bruins programming.
A Bally Sports+ subscription starts at $20/month, with content varying by region. The operator of those networks, Diamond Sports Group, could soon file for a bankruptcy reorganization as it deals with nearly $9 billion in debt.
MSG Networks has also developed a free, ad-supported streaming channel called MSG SportsZone, which airs the company’s original programming. It’s currently available on Vizio and Plex platforms, with wider expansion expected as the company looks to monetize its archive and other non-game content.
(This story has been updated with info about MSG+’s availability in the third paragraph.)