ESPN snares Latin American rights in time for PGA Championship start
ESPN, the international sports broadcaster, struck a late deal with the PGA of America for rights across Latin America, Brazil and the Caribbean to the US PGA Championship, the second major of the golf season, which got under way in New York today.
The 2019 tournament at Bethpage Black in Farmingdale is the first under the long-term contract.
The agreement covers 45 territories.
There will be 22 hours of live linear coverage from this year’s PGA Championship, and more than 110 hours of live-streamed coverage.
In addition, ESPN will live-stream featured groups and featured holes coverage throughout the four days on ESPN Play in Latin America and the Caribbean and on WatchESPN in Brazil.
ESPN holds rights across Latin America to all four golf majors.
Burke Magnus, ESPN’s executive vice-president of programming and scheduling, said: “We are proud to expand our relationship with the PGA of America to Latin America and the Caribbean, home of many golf fans. With this deal, ESPN now holds the Latin American rights to all four major championships–plus select PGA Tour events – and is the home of the best golf events in the region.”
Jeff Price, PGA of America’s chief commercial officer, added: “The PGA of America is excited to partner with ESPN to deliver the PGA Championship to golf fans across the Latin American and Caribbean regions. Golf is a global sport, and we are proud to present the PGA Championship—which perennially features the strongest field in all of golf—to an expanding international audience, who are highly passionate about the game.”
The 2019 PGA Championship is the last to be shown in USA by Turner Sports, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, after which domestic rights will switch to ESPN in an 11-year agreement. National network CBS retained rights to show coverage from Saturday and Sunday.
The PGA Championship has traditionally taken place in August as the last major of the year, but has now moved to May, where it will occupy a permanent slot in the calendar, a month after The Masters.
The rationale for the switch was twofold: to avoid a clash with the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (golf returned to the Olympic programme at Rio 2016, but its inclusion meant that the fourth major of the year had to be brought forward to July); and to raise the profile of the tournament, which is widely regarded as the least important of the majors.
It will now be followed by the US Open in June and the British Open in July.