Netflix to Host Its First Live Sporting Event
Streaming television has already subsumed the worlds of fictional movies and series, and they’re loaded with documentaries as well. The next big frontier that all of the major players in the streaming world are looking to get into is live sports. Max, for example, recently launched a B/R Sports-themed add-on tier; it’s currently free for all of the company’s subscribers to try, but it will cost an added $9.99 a month starting next March.
Everyone is looking to see what Netflix does in response — and wouldn’t you know it? They just announced their first-ever live (streaming) sporting event. It is called “The Netflix Cup” and the streamer is billing it as “Netflix’s first-ever live sports event featuring athletes from Formula 1: Drive to Survive and Full Swing,” two other sports-themed Netflix reality TV series. The stars of both shows will be paired up and then play a golf tournament in Las Vegas. The event is sanctioned by the PGA Tour and Formula 1.
Confirmed entrants in the tournament include drivers Alex Albon, Pierre Gasly, Lando Morris, Carlos Sainz, and golfers Rickie Fowler, Max Homa, Collin Morikawa, and Justin Thomas. Here is the teaser for the tournament:
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Ultimately, this is really a promotional event for Netflix and for the stars of two different Netflix series. But it is surely also a test to see how the Netflix audience responds to live sports — and to see how the technology side of things works as well. The chances that this is the only live sporting event that ever happens on Netflix is close to zero. This is only the beginning.
The Netflix Cup premieres live on Netflix on November 14 at 6PM ET.