For a third successive season, ESPN will broadcast the Sal’s NBL across the United States in 2022.
All 96 games will again be available live on the ESPN App, the global giants bringing Kiwi hoops to a growing fan base. Coverage will also be available in Puerto Rico.
After joining the League for the first time ahead of the ground-breaking 2020 Showdown - when New Zealand was one of only a handful of countries staging sport anywhere in the world - ESPN’s American audience has found a soft spot for Kiwi basketball.
Working together with Spalk, the architect of the inaugural agreement in 2020 was Justin Nelson, who now works for the League’s broadcast partner Sky Sport as Head of Commercial and Events.
Nelson says the continued support from ESPN and opportunity for Kiwi players to be seen in the United States is of “immeasurable value.”
“I still remember back to 2020 when I was receiving emails from viewers on ESPN asking about Jarrod Kenny and his mullet. I think the Americans really enjoyed seeing and learning a bit more about New Zealand and the players in this competition, and it’s grown from there," says Nelson.
“With the support of Sky Sport, it’s great that we're able to take Kiwi basketball to the United States through ESPN.”
BBNZ General Manager of Leagues, Huw Beynon is delighted that American fans will once again get the chance to sit up late and watch the Sal’s NBL.
“ESPN has become a really valuable partner over the last couple of years, and I’m thrilled to hear they will be showing every game again in 2022,” said Beynon.
“Backed by our partnership with Sky Sport, by taking our games to a huge population in the United States on ESPN we are providing New Zealand players - especially the younger generation - the chance to showcase their skills to NCAA scouts, week in week out.
“There are more than fifty Kiwi men playing collegiate ball in the United States right now, and no doubt this level of coverage on ESPN will help expose the next generation of rising stars,” Beynon added.
The 2022 Sal’s NBL season tips off on 7 April, when the EnviroNZ Franklin Bulls and Auckland Tuatara clash. The full 2022 schedule is available at https://bit.ly/33hw4K9