F PBA TV rights choices down to Pangilinan, Lopez networks - Powcast Sports

PBA TV rights choices down to Pangilinan, Lopez networks

source: Ronnie Nathanielsz | inquirer.net

PBA Board of governors chair Rene Pardo said yesterday the league will decide on Monday which network will air the PBA games in the next two conferences, a choice that has been narrowed down to just two.

Pardo told the Inquirer that only Solar Sports and TV 5 are in the running for the telecast rights of the league, with both networks needing to iron out key hurdles in their bid to carry the games.

“Those are the only two options right now,” Pardo said.

Solar Sports is pushing to transfer its airing rights of the PBA to ABS-CBN, but needs to convince the PBA to try out the Lopez-owned outfit’s UHF channel, Studio 23.

Solar Sports top honcho Peter Chanliong had met with the PBA board to make a presentation.

TV 5 has its own problems.

The station owned by Manny V. Pangilinan—who owns two franchises in the PBA—is bidding to air the PBA games over the more popular VHF stream, but will only handle the production part. TV 5 plans to air the games over RPN.

However, Solar Sports had earlier said that part of the reason it was assigning its right to ABS-CBN was because RPN would be reformatting its programming and unload its sports shows.

Solar Sports and ABS-CBN have a tentative agreement wherein the latter would take over the coverage of the PBA. Part of the deal would also mean Solar Sports surrendering its Philippine airing rights of the NBA games to ABS-CBN.

The PBA owners, who met last January 25, said they want the PBA games to remain on a VHF channel, which effectively shuts the door on Solar Sports’ bid to air the games on Studio 23.

Asked how the owners may react to any decision to telecast the games on a UHF channel, Pardo said they “will just have to tell them the truth that we exhausted all attempts to try and keep it on a VHF channel. It’s either that or we go to Channel 13.”

Pardo indicated the government-sequestered IBC network was not a viable alternative.

Three years ago Solar Sports won the franchise by offering a three-year deal worth about P510 million, outbidding ABS-CBN.

There were strong indications earlier that a majority of the board members had leaned towards Studio 23, which had even offered to telecast the finals on its pre-eminent Channel 2.



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