General The highest bidder is not the best option

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The highest bidder is not the best option

The NRL brass are currently negotiating with broadcasters about the next television deal that will take the game forward from 2017. They better be listening to the growing chorus of voices screaming about not just taking the biggest offer on the table.

When the last deal was signed back in 2012, the NRL trumpeted as a huge win for the sport as they reaped a payday of over $1 billion. Sure, that was a significant figure and it has helped put the game in sound financial position. The downside to that deal though is the fact that those television broadcasters are running roughshod over the game. State of Origin supersedes everything and the NRL is relegated to after-thought status during the middle part of the year as Des Hasler so eloquently explained at his weekend press conference. The TV companies dictate which match-ups go into which timeslot, which leaves the glamour teams getting significantly more free-to-air and prime time coverage. All of that results in those clubs earing a lot more than others in advertising and sponsorship, which flies in the face of the league having a salary cap that is so stringently policed. Channel 9 even moves the kick-off times of their televised games around to suit – the concept of kick-off bingo has become popular over the past two seasons as fans try to guess what time the ball will actually be kicked off.

I understand that television pays for the game so they should be able to demand for a timeslot that works best for them but they shouldn’t be able to determine which teams play etc. They certainly shouldn’t be able to have any say on the way the sport is governed. The NRL has a good product – it could be even better with a few tweaks – and is in a good position to negotiate. Their mentality should be that of we are going to make the best decisions by the game and then take that to the broadcasters and ask how much they’re willing to pay.

I heard new Warriors chief executive and former NRL COO Jim Doyle at a lunch last week say he knew how valuable State of Origin was to a broadcaster on a Wednesday night and that he couldn’t see it being moved to a stand-alone round. Hang on, the NRL’s responsibility is to run the game the best way possible not sell to the highest bidder. I would bet anything that if the NRL simply made the decision that Origin was going to be staged on a stand-alone...

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snake77

snake77

The last TV deal was pretty much the same content for a lot more money.

I agree they shouldn't just look at the money from the broadcasters. The idea of splitting up the rights for Origin and the NRL has merits in getting more money but it could make changing the structure of the season more difficult if the NRL and Origin is picked up by different broadcasters. The company with the NRL wouldn't want to have no games on for a month or so during the Origin period.

The situation is a bit different to the previous rights where the NRL needed a large cash injection. They have built up cash reserves money for different initiatives. This time around they could make some strategic decisions on what they want to do (expansion, Origin Period etc). Dave Smith has said the current deal is too restrictive and the next one the NRL would have more power along with an increase in revenue. This sounded like we could see some changes but I lost a bit of hope when he said this week he was hesitant to mess with the Origin format when pressed on the impact it has on clubs.

I'd like to see some changes to the format of the competition; mainly to fix the down period during Origin. Now whether that means a slightly shorter competition and standalone Origin or rep period that's what they would need to consider. The Commission is in place now and the NRL have restructured it's time to start making some strategic decisions on the format of the season.



On a similar topic with the broadcast deal. If I was part of the NRL heading to each broadcaster to discuss with them their plans for picking up the rights. We know what Channel 9 and Fox Sports broadcast looks like. I like what we are getting from Fox Sports with the TV Shows such as NRL 360 etc and the broadcast of the games themselves. Channel 9 I like the graphics pre match we get outlining set plays and kicks but the commentary can get negative about the sport; with Channel 9 sometimes it feels like Ray Warren is the star not the guys on the field.

For Channel 7 or Channel 10 etc you'd want them to give you some games redone with their presentation including commentators.
 

Juju

can we please just having a fricken paid subscription service for live streaming. One that isn't a blatant price gouge by Sky…
 
Diesel

Diesel

The new TV deal means that the NRL won't have their balls held to ransom like the did in 2012. 9 and Fox's first and last rights are going and there are no restrictions for the new broadcast which means happy days for us fans in tv land and going to games that are more time friendlier.
 
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Diesel

Diesel

can we please just having a fricken paid subscription service for live streaming. One that isn't a blatant price gouge by Sky…
I saw an article this week saying the NRL and Google through YouTube are in discussions where Google may buy the rights and sell off to traditional media while having all games live on a dedicated YouTube NRL channel
 
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snake77

snake77

e new TV deal means that the NRL won't have their balls held to ransom like the did in 2012. 9 and Fox's first and last rights are going and there are no restrictions for the new broadcast which means happy days for us fans in tv land and going to games that are more time friendlier.
Besides the extra money coming into the game the first and last rights being removed from the deal was one of the big wins. It should hopefully provide more competition this time around.

Imagine having that still over the NRL it was up to 2027 or something crazy.
 
gREVUS

gREVUS

Long live the Rainbows and Butterflies
Contributor
I saw an article this week saying the NRL and Google through YouTube are in discussions where Google may buy the rights and sell off to traditional media while having all games live on a dedicated YouTube NRL channel
if google did buy the game, who would film it for them? Who would commentate? is this the next big thing in online content for google, cause if they did i would ditch Foxtell in a heartbeat and go for Fetch or Stan or whatever as way cheaper
 

Selector

can we please just having a fricken paid subscription service for live streaming. One that isn't a blatant price gouge by Sky…

There is a live streaming service that shows every game online for free live you can also watch older games games on demand think the quality is 720HD. Google is your friend. Not that I promote the illegal viewing of the NRL. If your reading this SKY.
 

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