Discovery puts Sky Sports in trouble by snapping up rights to PGA Tour golf

US broadcasting corporation Discovery have snapped up the international rights to golf’s biggest season-long property, the PGA Tour.

A mammoth 12-year deal worth $2bn will give the company – which owns sports channel Eurosport – TV and online media rights to the tour as well as including the development of an on-demand service in order to host the events.

It’s yet another coup for Eurosport and Discovery who have been blazing a trail through sports rights, certainly in the UK, in recent months.

The Olympic Games as well as the likes of the biggest events in tennis, snooker and cycling are now on the platform, whilst the highlights package for the Football League was also bought by Discovery, and will be shown on their channel Quest.

Interestingly, though, some of the rights taken on by Discovery over the last few months could be sublicensed to other broadcasters. They have already done that with the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang this year and Eurosport has been using Twitter to great effect, seeding highlights and clips as they happen.

Subsequently, that could mean that Sky Sports loses out on another one of their prized sporting assets. After losing ATP Tour tennis to Amazon Prime and Champions League football in recent years, Spanish football will also leave the broadcaster next season.

Sky’s contract with the PGA Tour will run out in 2022, so nothing major will change there in the near future, but before then, if Sky are to continue to show US golf, they’ll have to agree a deal with Discovery.

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Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 813 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and editor of Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan_

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