IMG Arena has secured the rights to provide live NHL streaming to US sportsbook partners.
Following the deal, legal US sportsbooks will be able to offer customers live video of “select out-of-market” hockey games.
IMG said the agreement would help drive engagement for NHL fans. The company has previously streamed NHL games to European partners for several years.
“The NHL is a highly-valued asset in our portfolio,” said Freddie Longe, managing director of IMG Arena. “We are proud to expand this successful partnership to offer one of the largest US sports to our growing customer base of sportsbooks.”
The agreement marks the latest expansion in the US from IMG, which also provides official data for tennis. The London-based company also has data deals with the UFC and PGA Tour, although it has yet to announce any operator partners for those feeds.
Streaming boosts betting activity
Live streaming is a proven driver of betting turnover in Europe. In 2019, more than 175 million hours of IMG content was watched by 56 million unique viewers around the globe.
The NHL said the deal was part of its “progressive approach” to sports betting. The league already boasts official betting partnerships with MGM Resorts, FanDuel Sportsbook and William Hill.
“We are excited about the expansion of our international relationship with IMG Arena into the US,” said Steve McArdle, NHL executive vice president of digital media and strategic planning.
“The NHL has taken a progressive approach to sports betting, and this live game streaming opportunity with IMG Arena provides another innovative touchpoint for fan engagement.”
Hockey is currently a relatively small betting sport, accounting for a low single-digit share of New Jersey revenues in January.