ROOT SPORTS™ and the Pittsburgh Penguins have reached agreement on a long-term television rights deal through the 2028-29 season.
Under the agreement, ROOT SPORTS will be the exclusive rightsholder for Penguins’ regional telecasts and will televise a minimum of 70 regular season games each season. The network also will have the opportunity to carry pre-season and playoff games. All games will be produced and distributed in high definition.
Ratings for Penguins games on ROOT SPORTS have led the NHL’s local TV ratings in the United States for four straight seasons. This season, they achieved a new record with an average rating of 8.68.
“We value our relationship with the Penguins organization and its fans,” said Mark Shuken, president and CEO of DIRECTV Sports Networks, the parent company of ROOT SPORTS. “The passion and following of the Penguins’ fan base consistently rank among the highest in the NHL and that support is evident in our record-setting television ratings over the past four seasons. We are proud to continue our partnership with such a distinguished franchise.”
The long-term television deal comes during a season when the Penguins opened the new CONSOL Energy Center, reached agreement with eight founding corporate partners at the new arena, extended their sellout streak to more than 200 games and sold out all suites and club seats.
“This agreement with our partners at ROOT SPORTS means the future of Penguins hockey in Pittsburgh has never been brighter,” said David Morehouse, CEO and president of the team. “Together, we have been able to lead the NHL in local television ratings in the United States, and we look forward to building on those numbers with ROOT SPORTS creative style and commitment to cutting-edge technology. Combined with our long-term naming rights agreement with CONSOL Energy, and the support of our eight founding partners and 15,000 season ticket holders, we’ve developed a very strong foundation for future success.”
In addition to live and replayed games during each season, ROOT SPORTS will continue to provide a comprehensive and compelling lineup of hockey-related programming – with unique access to the team and its players. In the off-season, ROOT SPORTS will continue to carry original specials focusing on current and former Penguins players and teams.
The 2010-11 season marks the 25th year of the partnership between Pittsburgh’s exclusive regional sports network and the Penguins. Paul Steigerwald and Bob Errey are the voices bringing Penguins hockey to more than 2.4 million cable and satellite homes in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and Maryland on ROOT SPORTS.
ROOT SPORTS is owned and operated by DIRECTV Sports Networks, a controlled subsidiary of DIRECTV.