from Bill Shea of The Athletic,
To help make sense of the name change, the sports betting aspects, and what Sinclair ownership of the channels means, here’s what we know so far.
An easy one: What’s happening?
Under a naming rights deal, the Fox Sports regional channels become Bally Sports later this year. For example, Fox Sports Detroit will become Bally Sports Detroit for Tigers, Red Wings and Pistons fans who watch those channels through their local cable or digital providers. This was long expected because Sinclair bought the channels in 2019. Bally’s sports wagering technology will be incorporated into the deal.
What does the Sinclair-Bally’s deal mean for games on my local Fox Sports station?
In the next few months, the Fox Sports name and branding will be replaced with the name, logo and colors of Bally’s, a Rhode Island-based gambling company. There are no reported changes for on-air or other personnel. While details haven’t been disclosed, expect to see gambling-related content in and around live games, both broadcast and digital. And it’s not just Bally’s: Teams and leagues have regularly been announcing their own wagering tech, data and content relationships with sports betting companies. For example, the PointsBet virtual logo will be visible on-ice at Little Caesars Arena during Red Wings game broadcasts.