If you’re a fan of the Golden State Warriors or the Sacramento Kings — or just an NBA fan in general we have some good news. Facebook will be streaming a game at 6 p.m. PT tonight.
The only catch is you have to live in India to see it.
This is the first ever NBA game live-streamed on the social media platform, and Re/Code says it’s tied into a Bollywood night promotion at the King’s brand new, gleaming Golden 1 Center, with Kings owner Vivek Ranadive having grown up in India being a coincidence. Or not.
There are no commercials in this stream, either. So when there is a stoppage in play, the Facebook viewers in India will see the same thing fans in the stands see, like ball boys running out to dry the court. They will be getting the NBA’s International League Pass subscription broadcast, and there’s no fee for them tonight. Re/Code notes “the NBA says this is a one off scenario, not a piece of any larger partnership” at this point.
Facebook has watched Twitter stream the NFL on Thursday nights during the regular season that just ended, and likely wouldn’t mind accessing a piece of that digital pie. Twitter also streams some NBA and NHL contests and professional golf.
This isn’t Facebook’s first foray into live-streaming of major sports, having streamed MLB games in the past. The social network also presented some USA Basketball Olympic tuneup exhibition games. While the major networks pay huge dollars for their conventional over-the-air and cable rights to sports like MLB, NBA, NHL and the NFL, Facebook is staring the future right in the face. The traditional television platform is no longer the sole choice for the end user — you’re not stuck in the living room with the TV set anymore.
With the proliferation of smartphones and faster networks, the technological barrier of delivering content is rapidly disappearing — as long as you’re in an area that can get a strong signal.