why does espn plus blackout games

why does espn plus blackout games

ESPN Plus Blackout Games

Sports are a crucial part of the American entertainment palette, and ESPN Plus is a popular option to stream some of them. Unfortunately, the service often has blackout games. Here we’ll explain the possible reasons why.

Conflicting Rights

Since ESPN Plus is a pay-per-view service, the viewers are paying for exclusive rights. This could interfere with the exclusive rights of another provider, and so, to avoid any legal complications, the game is blacked out, as allowing it to be streamed would cause a conflict of interests. This mostly happens when there are local broadcasting rights that take precedence.

Lengthy Negotiations

Organizations such as the NBA need to negotiate a deal with other services to provide streaming content. This involves a long negotiation process, and until a deal is finalized, the content remains unavailable. This could be the reason why some games are blacked out on ESPN Plus.


It is possible that the subscription you are paying for ESPN Plus is not enough to cover the costs that come with streaming the game. ESPN Plus may need the broadcasting company to pay the game producer, and your subscription may not be enough. This is why ESPN Plus may opt to blackout certain games.


Whether due to conflicting rights, lengthy negotiations or payment issues, ESPN Plus has blackout games. It’s a bit of a bummer to not being able to watch the game you are looking for, but understanding the possible reasons behind it can make it less infuriating.



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