Solid Ice For Bally Sports and the NHL? Diamond Renews the L.A. Kings

Los Angeles Kings
Los Angeles Kings goaltender Joonas Korpisalo (Image credit: Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

In a move that would seem to portend a stabilized relationship between bankrupt regional sports networks subsidiary Diamond Sports Group and the National Hockey League, the Los Angeles Kings have re-upped their contract with Bally Sports West. 

The Kings will also show six of their regular season games this upcoming season on Los Angeles' KCAL-TV.

Diamond's announcement Thursday didn't specify how long the agreement was for, much less what the NHL team is being paid. 

But it plays like good news for Diamond, especially after an NHL lawyer told a bankruptcy judge a month ago that the league might look for alternative local TV arrangements for its clubs falling under the Bally Sports umbrella should a restructuring plan for Bally Sports’s operator fail to emerge soon. 

At least the ownership group for one major-league pro team, Anschutz Entertainment Group, thinks Diamond and Bally Sports have a future. 

“We thoroughly enjoy working with our friends at Bally Sports. We are happy this agreement maintains consistency and continues to give our stakeholders informed and intimate coverage of our hockey club,“ Kings chief operating officer Kelly Cheesman said in a statement. “We also look forward to the expanded reach through multiple, convenient options.“ 

Diamond entered bankruptcy back in March, aiming to restructure over $8 billion in debt and renegotiate money-losing deals with individual pro team constituents. 

And it’s been a long, bloody six months since, with Diamond unable to come to terms with two Major League Baseball teams, the San Diego Padres and Arizona Diamondbacks. Meanwhile, the NBA’s Phoenix Suns and WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, both under the ownership of Mat Ishbia, elected to not renew their Bally Sports deals. 

In addition to individual team drama, Diamond is suing the company from which it was spun off, Sinclair Broadcast Group, and it still faces arduous carriage renewal negotiations with top pay TV operators Comcast, Charter Communications and DirecTV. 

Daniel Frankel

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!