- Mark Cohon and Phil King praise great game, strong partnership, bright future -
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TORONTO, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - The Canadian Football League (CFL) and Bell Media's TSN and RDS are proud to announce a broad new multi-platform broadcast agreement that extends their long-term partnership through to 2018.
As part of the extension, TSN and RDS secure exclusive media rights to all CFL pre-season and regular season games, playoffs, and the Canadian icon that is the Grey Cup, as well as to the CFL Draft and CFL Combine. The CFL regular season broadcast schedule expands to 81 games next year in 2014 when the new Ottawa franchise joins the league. The CFL will also see additional games broadcast in French with more games being broadcast on RDS2.
In addition to broadcast and digital rights, the deal includes exclusive radio rights to the Grey Cup for TSN and TEAM Radio stations.
"This new agreement is a testament to the strength of today's CFL, our tremendous partnership with TSN and RDS, and their important position in the marketplace as Canada's sports leaders," said Mark Cohon, the Commissioner of the CFL. "It's a transformative deal, both for the growth of our league and its presentation. It's an important component of our league's bright future, along with great performances on the field, fan support in the stands, and new stadiums across the country."
"The CFL is one of Canada's leading sports properties and has been one of the main audience drivers on the TSN and RDS schedules. We are extremely proud and honoured to have been a key partner in helping to make the CFL such an important part of the Canadian landscape," said Phil King, President of CTV Programming and Sports. "TSN and RDS are committed to delivering the biggest events in sports to our subscribers and telling the country's most compelling sports stories. The CFL delivers superbly on both fronts. All of us are looking forward to adding even more games in 2014 with the Ottawa franchise joining the league."
TSN has been broadcasting CFL games since 1986 and RDS has been a CFL broadcaster since 1989. In 2008, TSN and RDS became the exclusive broadcasters of the CFL and the Grey Cup. Since that time the networks have established new audience records for CFL broadcasts. Last year's 100th Grey Cup game on TSN was the most watched ever on English-language television, averaging 5.4 million viewers through the historic telecast.
Last year, TSN, RDS, and Bell Media also embarked on a critically-acclaimed original documentary series, Engraved on a Nation, focusing on how the Grey Cup has become such an intrinsic part of Canadian heritage.
TSN and RDS' current agreement with the CFL expires at the end of the 2013 season.
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About the Canadian Football League
The Canadian Football League is our league. It's built on a tradition as proud, staged on a field as broad, and played at a pace as exciting as the country we are proud to call home. Our championship game, the Grey Cup, is the biggest single annual sporting event in Canada. The 101st edition will be played on November 24, 2013 in Regina, Saskatchewan.
TSN is Canada's Sports Leader and #1 specialty network. With a broad portfolio of multimedia sports assets, TSN delivers world-class content across industry-leading platforms including TSN2, TSN.ca, TSN Radio and TSN Mobile TV. Official broadcaster of the Grey Cup, IIHF World Junior Championship and FIFA Women's World Cup Canada 2015, TSN's slate of live sports coverage includes NHL, CFL, NFL, NBA, MLS, Season of Champions Curling, UEFA Euro 2016, MLB Sunday Night Baseball, Barclays Premier League, Golf's Majors, NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series, F1, Grand Slam Tennis, NCAA March Madness, and Skate Canada events. TSN is a division of Bell Media, which is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company.
Le Réseau des sports (RDS) is a French-language sports network offering a comprehensive, world-class programming line-up. Since its inception in 1989, RDS has developed an unparalleled programming grid featuring major events and properties that include the exclusive broadcast rights to the Montreal Canadiens and other NHL hockey games, the Stanley Cup playoffs and finals, MLS and Montreal Impact, CFL and NFL football, the Grey Cup and the Super Bowl, Tour de France, F1 and NASCAR racing, MLB baseball including the World Series, over 30 PGA Tour golf tournaments (including 4 Majors), ATP tennis and all Grand Slams, FIFA World Cup from 2015 to 2022, Euro 2016, Barclays Premier League as well as the IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship, Skate Canada and Canada Cup of curling. RDS is a division of Bell Media, which is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. For more details on RDS, please visit RDS.ca.