Phoenix Suns games will air free on 3TV: What you need to know
For the first time in decades, Suns and Mercury fans won't need cable to watch games.
What's happening: The teams and Gray Television announced a partnership Friday that will allow Arizona's Family to show games over the air on KTVK (channel 3) and the company's newly launched KPHE (channel 44).
- Fans will also be able to stream games through Kiswe.
Why it matters: Suns and Mercury games will be available to nearly 2.8 million households in Arizona, more than tripling the teams' cable reach, they said.
- Yes, but: The move could cost the Suns tens of millions in guaranteed money per year in the short term, ESPN reported.
What they're saying: "We're not focusing on money. We're focusing on winning, success and taking care of fans, taking care of the community," new team owner Mat Ishbia told ESPN. "What happens is you always end up making money. It always works out."
The big picture: The move comes as the Suns' former broadcasting partner, Bally Sports Arizona, encounters financial challenges.
- Bally's parent company Diamond Sports Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in March and missed a payment to the Diamondbacks.
The intrigue: Diamond Sports is accusing the Suns of breach of contract and violation of bankruptcy law for leaving the company for Gray, The Arizona Republic reported.
The other side: "Diamond's position is totally inaccurate. We are moving forward with this deal and could not be more excited about what it means for our fans and our future," Suns and Phoenix Mercury CEO Josh Bartelstein said in a statement.
Go deeper: New Phoenix Suns, Mercury deal sends warning signal for cable
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