World Surf League Photo Credit: Brent Bielmann/World Surf League

The World Surf League has caught the ultimate wave.

ESPN announced Wednesday that it has reached an agreement with the WSL to broadcast its 2024 Championship Tour season.

ESPN+ will stream all 10 CT competitions for both men’s and women’s divisions, as well as the U.S. Open of Surfing. In addition, episodes of the all-access feature show WSL: Inside Pro Surfing will air throughout the season on ESPN2.

For the uninitiated, the WSL is the governing body for professional surfers and has been around since 1976. It has a surprisingly avid following around the world, and even in the U.S. it has been a phenomenon on social media and via streaming. The Sports Business Journal reported that for 2017, for example, viewers streamed 28 million hours of content, putting the WSL third behind the NFL and NBA in that respect.

The league’s events have been available in the past on Facebook, its FAST TV channel and on

WSL Chief Revenue Officer Cherie Cohen said the deal with ESPN is a huge opportunity.

“Working with ESPN this season is a fantastic opportunity to bring the sport to more viewers and new audiences across different platforms in the United States,” Cohen said (via ESPN). “They are the biggest name in sports content in the USA, and this agreement offers us the opportunity to share surfing with the millions of subscribers across their digital properties as well as on linear television.

“We are thrilled to showcase the 2024 WSL Championship Tour across ESPN platforms,” ESPN vice president of programming and acquisitions Tim Reed said. “The WSL CT is a great addition to the platform and live competitive surfing will fit well alongside an already significant content offering. We look forward to kicking off the season in Hawaii next week.”

The first event, the Lexus Pipe Pro Presented by YETI at Banzai Pipeline in Oahu, Hawaii runs Jan. 29 through Feb. 10. Other tour stops include Portugal, Australia, Tahiti and Brazil, among other destinations.

[ESPN; Photo Credit: Brent Bielmann/World Surf League]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.