NBC to Televise Games From New Lacrosse League

NBC Sports has reached an exclusive agreement to televise the games of a new lacrosse league.

The Premier Lacrosse League, started by star player Paul Rabil, will begin play on June 1 and have its championship weekend on Sept. 21.

All league games--including the all-star game and championship--will be televised live by NBC Sports, either on broadcast, cable, digital or direct-to-consumer platforms.

NBC Sports will show 17 games on NBC Sports Network and two on NBC.

“We are excited to partner with one of the world’s greatest lacrosse players, Paul Rabil, and his brother Mike on this innovative and revolutionary new league,” said Jon Miller, president, programming, NBC Sports. “As the exclusive home of the PLL, we’ll super-serve fans across the country by utilizing all of our unprecedented assets to drive awareness to this exciting new league. NBC Sports has a long and successful history of growing emerging sports into powerhouses, and we’re excited by this new opportunity.”

The PLL will use a touring model approach to bring the and its top players to new markets from coast to coast. It will start with six teams of 20 players that will compete each weekend in a different city.

Rabil, who formed the league with his brother, investor and entrepreneur Mike Rabil, said the PLL will give players full time wages, equity in the league and benefits.

“Ever since I fell in love with the game I dreamed of being a professional athlete on the sport’s biggest stage,” said Paul Rabil, co-founder and CSO of Premier Lacrosse League. “We’re building the professional sports league that lacrosse deserves. The best players in the world will be showcased like never before, thanks to a unique touring model, a robust media-rights partnership, and player content strategy. Additionally, our players will be owners in the PLL, contributing to the build, competition, and ultimate success of the league. This is a product that aligns a league and the players like never before, serving a passionate fan base that deserves access to the sport nationwide, at state-of-the-art venues, and on screens everywhere.”

PLL is backed by The Raine Group, Creative Artists Agency, The Chernin Group, and Blum Capital.

The NBC deals is also an important asset for the new league.

“NBC Sports is synonymous with great storytelling, best-in-class production, and utilizing all of its platforms and assets to deliver record-setting viewership. We could not be more thrilled to have them as our exclusive partner as we launch our revolutionary league,” Rabil said.

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.