Canadians will find themselves sidelined once again with Twitter’s newest live streaming venture, but with hockey being the feature sport for the latest deal, this one stings just a bit more.
In August of 2015, a six-year digital media rights partnership between the NHL and Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) was created, which is why the two leagues’ broadcasting rights are being announced together.
This week, Twitter announced a new live streaming deal with MLBAM that covers both MLB and NHL games. While some MLB games will be available in Canada, no NHL games will be accessible for Canadian fans, due to Rogers owning the Canadian NHL broadcast rights.
The MLB deal will only feature streaming of out-of-market games, so Canadians will also be unable to keep up with the Toronto Blue Jays online.
Additionally, the MLB will also be creating an original program for Twitter, similar to the one announced by the NBA earlier this month. ‘The Rally’ will be a nightly program that features highlights and expert commentary. The show will also incorporate live trends and other interactive elements using Twitter-based data. It will not be accessible in Canada, but will be available to everyone (with or without a Twitter account) in the U.S.
“Twitter has long been a great partner and platform for both baseball and hockey fans as they follow their favorite teams and players every day,” said Kenny Gersh, MLBAM’s executive vice president of business in a press release. “We know fans will embrace what this wide-ranging partnership brings – expanded and reliable access to live baseball and hockey and the introduction of Twitter’s first daily live highlight show delivered intuitively to a platform where they’re actively engaged with the games.”
While this may be the case for some fans, Canadians will have to live without ‘Canada’s game,’ and instead settle for America’s national pastime played by American teams.