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Broadcasting & Cable
Broadcasting & Cable
Daniel Frankel

Diamond Pays the Texas Rangers, Keeps Them On Bally Sports Southwest

Texas Rangers

Sinclair's Diamond Sports Group subsidiary has paid the Texas Rangers in full for their 2023 local TV rights, according to the Dallas Morning News, citing individuals close to the team. 

The payment implies that bankrupt Diamond has decided to keep the Rangers, currently residing atop Major League Baseball's American League Western Division amid a resurgent 2023 early season, on regional sports network Bally Sports Southwest. 

According to bankruptcy court records, Diamond had a hardball deadline to either pay the team in full Thursday or let the club walk away with its local TV rights and establish new distribution in conjunction with the MLB, as the San Diego Padres did two weeks ago when Diamond elected not to pay them. 

Diamond is currently using the flexibility provided by Chapter 11 restructuring to walk away from unprofitable Bally Sports team contracts.

The subsidiary is still weighing a similar economic calculus for the Arizona Diamondbacks, Cleveland Guardians and Minnesota Twins, each of which are owed full TV rights payments by July 1.  

Last week, Diamond asked the Houston bankruptcy court adjudicating its restructuring to clarify that if it decides to pay the aforementioned teams in full for TV rights months in advance, it will still get money back should it decide to exercise its right to tear up the club's contract before the term covered by the payment ends.

The court refused to offer that clarity. 

Diamond is in the process of trying to shed $8 billion in debt by either trading equity to its creditors or renegotiating unprofitable contracts. 

On Wednesday, it was revealed that Diamond ditched an agreement with Gray Television-owned Raycom to show select Atlantic Coast Conference college football and basketball on various East Coast Bally Sports channels. 

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