Just days after One World Sports elected not to extend its five-year agreement with DISH, One World Sports has been added to DirecTV’s Sports lineup on channel number 623.
The distribution on DirecTV, which went live this morning, is a major step forward for the network in increasing its distribution to sports fans across the United States. Currently, One World Sport is carried by multiple providers such as Verizon, RCN, Atlantic Broadband as well as specialty streaming service fuboTV (free trial). Losing distribution on DISH can be seen as a loss for the sports channel but considering their limited exposure on the provider as an ethnic channel, their addition to DirecTV Sports Package lineup is a huge plus for the Connecticut-based network.
One World Sports’ soccer properties include NASL matches (including all New York Cosmos home matches), AFC Champions League, Arsenal TV, Bayern TV and Chelsea TV. In addition to soccer, OWS has cricket rights (England national team, Caribbean Premier League); ice hockey (KHL); basketball (Chinese Basketball League); table tennis and darts. Also, One World Sports recently signed a deal to broadcast Ivy League American football games (the season begins on Saturday, September 17).
Just last week, OWS decided to break off their relationship with DISH after the TV provider refused a request for a short term contract extension while the two parties negotiated specific changes OWS requested. Specifically, OWS was seeking carriage in a domestic sports package, and in HD across all of its platforms, rather than continue to be packaged as an ethnic channel, and in SD. In the words of a OWS spokesperson: “It is our desire for the network to have carriage on DISH with packaging consistent with, and in a format, where fans look for live sports content.” The new deal with DirecTV seems to deliver all of these features to OWS.
The news will come as welcome relief to the second-division NASL in helping games on One World Sports reach a wider audience.
Ed Perovic is the publisher of soccertvblog.com – a source for schedules and US TV information for major European Leagues and International competitions.