The NFL’s Game Pass International service has had some issues over the years, especially after it went from an in-house product to an outsourced one (to Deltatre and Overtier for Europe in 2017, to DAZN/Perform for Canada and the rest of the non-U.S. world that same year). It’s now going to be under DAZN’s umbrella worldwide for 10 years, as part of a new deal announced Tuesday, with that deal kicking in ahead of the 2023 NFL season. John Ourand broke that news Tuesday morning at Sports Business Journal:
DAZN picks up the rights to NFL Game Pass International for the next 10 years.
SBJ's story: https://t.co/QedU148cna
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) February 7, 2023
Here’s more from that story:
DAZN picked up the rights to the NFL Game Pass International package as part of a 10-year deal that will be announced today. Financials were not available for the deal, which starts next season and is available in 200 countries and regions except the U.S. and China. DAZN will offer the package as a standalone subscription or an add-on package within the app. NFL Game Pass International makes every regular-season and post-season NFL game available to viewers outside the U.S.
And here are some quotes from the NFL’s release:
“Growing the NFL globally is a key strategic priority for the League and our 32 Clubs. We are excited to partner with DAZN to help us accelerate this effort,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Our goal has always been to make our games available to as many fans as possible, and we are confident that DAZN’s innovative viewing experience technology will best serve millions of viewers around the world while also engaging a new generation of international NFL fans.”
“The NFL is the premier sports media property, and DAZN is incredibly excited that they have chosen us as their international partner,” DAZN CEO Shay Segev said. “DAZN is the only company that is single-mindedly focused on delivering the very best digital experience for sports fans worldwide and I am confident that we will deliver a superb experience for NFL fans, while helping the league engage new markets and demographics in the sporting phenomenon that is NFL. We can’t wait to bring all the drama, passion and excitement that the NFL is renowned for to our customers as we continue to build the ultimate global destination for sports fans.”
While DAZN has had their own streaming issues in the past, especially with Game Pass in Canada near the start of that 2017 changeover, there have been fewer prominent complaints about them recently. But there have also been fewer complaints about the international Game Pass version in Europe than there used to be. So not everyone is thrilled with this:
GamePass is already available for most international countries without DAZN. Makes this a little confusing. You can only hope it doesn't mean changes to GamePass international, which is already super. #NFL https://t.co/khZEuvmunF
— Jamie Kemble (@JamieKemble) February 7, 2023
And one particular area of concern some noted is the lack of all-22 film on DAZN’s Canadian offering, as that footage is available on the current Game Pass International package in Europe (and is available in the U.S. on the NFL’s own NFL+ service, which replaced and expanded on the U.S. version of Game Pass this year):
This would be a concern about the DAZN/NFL International deal – All-22 film on gamepass is massive for those covering the game abroad https://t.co/EiVI7Cg64o
— Will Gavin (@WillGav) February 7, 2023
We’ll see how this changeover goes for the NFL and for DAZN. But it certainly sounds like DAZN will be running Game Pass International for some time to come. And with international being a big focus for the NFL at the moment, this may be quite significant.
[Sports Business Journal, NFL Communications; graphic from DAZN]