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NBA bringing live games to Facebook

July 21,2016 16:12

The NBA is making another push into live streaming — this time on Facebook with a series of pre-Olympics exhibition games. On Thursday the league announced it would be streaming the nine USA Basketball games, five from the men's team and four from ...

TOP TRENDING Eli Blumenthal, USA TODAY 9:04 a.m. EDT July 21, 2016The NBA is making another push into live streaming — this time on Facebook with a series of pre-Olympics exhibition games.On Thursday the league announced it would be streaming the nine USA Basketball games, five from the men's team and four from the women's, as the teams prepare for next month's 2016 Olympics games in Rio de Janeiro.The games, exhibitions to get the teams ready for the Olympics, feature the U.S. teams going up against other countries including China, Argentina (for the men), and Canada (for the women). The games will be a simulcast from the regular TV broadcast of the game that will air on NBA TV.Sponsored by Verizon, there will not be commercials for the any of the games, a change from the NBA TV broadcast. Breaks will instead consist of studio segments, features on USA Basketball and some of the in-arena feeds and entertainment.The first of the games, the US men's team versus Argentina, starts at 9 PM Eastern time on Friday night. The game will be streamed on both the NBA's and USA Basketball's Facebook pages and available free of charge.There will be games streaming throughout the next week, with last of the games coming on August 1 when the U.S. Men's team takes on Nigeria in its final tuneup before heading off to Rio.Olympic basketball games will not be streamed on Facebook. While some may view this round of streaming exhibition games as a trial for future, regular season games, the league would not discuss future plans for streaming on the platform.The Facebook broadcasts mark the first time the league has streamed a game live to the world's most popular social network. As with its presence on Twitter, the NBA has a large Facebook following, with nearly 31 million "likes," the largest of the U.S. sports leagues on the social network. USA Basketball has around 4.1 million "likes."Financial details on the NBA's streaming deal were not disclosed.It has been a busy week for the league's expansion into live streaming. On Tuesday the NBA announced a partnership with Twitter to bring two streaming shows, but not live games, in time for the 2016-2017 NBA season this fall.Similar to Twitter, the addition of live games is a boost for Facebook's budding live streaming endeavors. Last month the social giant signed a $50 million agreement with nearly 140 media companies and celebrities for content for Facebook Live, its new live streaming platform, according to the Wall Street Journal.Follow Eli Blumenthal on Twitter @eliblumenthalRead or Share this story: http://usat.ly/2adBCdf

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NBA bringing live games to Facebook
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