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NBA teams with RealNetworks

The National Basketball Association will get additional legs online in a deal with RealNetworks to carry audio of NBA games.

The multi-year pact is an indication of the league's growing interest in webcasting, with video streaming of select games abroad a prospect for next season, according to NBA Commissioner Davd Stern. "Outside the U.S., we feel that once the technology gets targeted, we feel this is a way to bring NBA games to fans in underserved markets," Stern said. "And there will be intense fans who will want additional programs." Stern did not identify specific markets.

RealNetworks will carry TV and audio league pass on its monthly $5.95 RealPlayer GoldPass streaming subscription service. RealNetworks will sponsor portions of the NBA site, and have a presence on the pro roundball league's home page. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The NBA currently offers subscriptions to its audio league pass, affording access to all games online, for $29.95.
- Richard Tedesco