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NBA partners with Roku to launch free streaming TV channel

The channel will be available through a new portal called NBA Zone, which is rolling out to Roku devices this week.

The channel will be available through a new portal called NBA Zone, which is rolling out to Roku devices this week.

The NBA Zone on Roku offers game clips, recaps, documentaries and other original programming from the professional basketball league.
The NBA Zone on Roku offers game clips, recaps, documentaries and other original programming from the professional basketball league. (Courtesy photo)

The National Basketball Association (NBA) has partnered with Roku to launch its first free, ad-supported streaming television (FAST) channel.

The stream, called NBA Fast, will debut first on the Roku Channel, Roku’s free streaming platform. NBA Fast will include game replays, highlights, documentaries and original series along with certain other programming associated with professional basketball.

The partnership also includes the launch of NBA Zone on Roku, which will offer a centralized location where basketball fans can watch clips from NBA games along with other content.

“Roku offers the kind of sports streaming experience that no other platform has — everything is tailored to the fan, whether they’re a die-hard fanatic or just getting into the local team,” Joe Franzetta, the Head of Sports at Roku, said in a statement on Wednesday. “This strategic league partnership brings us a giant step further in our mission to make sports programming both easy to find and engaging to watch. We’re giving our users floor seats to an always-on experience, and we’re proud to be doing it in close collaboration with the NBA.”

“We’re thrilled to expand our partnership with Roku with the NBA’s first FAST Channel and other NBA content and functionality that will serve as an enticement and on-ramp to live NBA games,” Greg Beaton, the NBA’s Senior Vice President of Content Partnerships, said on Wednesday. “This partnership supports our goal of reaching NBA fans with our content in innovative ways.”

NBA Fast will be accessible within the Roku Channel’s electronic program guide, as well as the NBA Zone and Sports Zone on Roku devices. The Roku Channel is available on all supported Roku TVs, streaming sticks and the Roku Ultra, and as a standalone app for Amazon Fire TV and Android TV (Google TV) devices.

“Bringing the NBA and the number one TV streaming platform in the U.S. together in one package is not only good for the fans — it’s also great for advertisers looking to tap into the power of marketing in sports,”  Kristina Shepard, the Vice President of Global Advertising Sales and Partnerships at Roku, said on Wednesday. “We’re excited to give brands the opportunity to reach our expanding, highly engaged audience, with some of the biggest moments of the basketball season yet to come.”

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 11 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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