NESN, the regional sports network owned by the Boston Red Sox and Boston Bruins, is going national.
The RSN has launched NESN National on Time Warner Cable's sports tier, called SportsPass, on its systems in North and South Carolina. Deal terms were not disclosed.
Time Warner Cable customers in the Carolinas are the first cable subscribers to receive NESN National, which enables fans outside of New England to follow the Red Sox, Bruins and all New England sports.
NESN National is now available on channel 529 in Charlotte, Greensboro, Raleigh and Wilmington, N.C. and Columbia, Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head, S.C.
A NESN spokesman said the RSN, whose national offering is available to DirecTV and Dish Network customers, is talking to other cable operators about carrying the national product, including additional Time Warner Cable systems.
Time Warner Cable also carries YES National, YES's version of the New York Yankees-led RSN, in North and South Carolina. YES also has national affiliate deals with a number of other distributors beyond the Yankees' broadcast territory.
Although fans can't watch live Red Sox or Bruins games owing to MLB and NHL TV restrictions, Time Warner Cable's SportsPass subscribers can view NESN's Red Sox and Bruins pre and post-game shows.
Additionally, NESN National also includes Bruins replays and classic games; NESN Daily, a daily sports news and debate program; minor league baseball; college hockey and basketball; and many of the network's Original NESN Entertainment productions such as The Instigators, Pocket Money and After the Game.
"The Boston Red Sox and Boston Bruins are two of the best known brands in professional sports and the addition of NESN National to SportsPass is just another example of our commitment to offering customers more choice and more programming," said Dan Santelle, vice president, programming and product development, Time Warner Cable Carolinas, in announcing the launch. "We're thrilled with this addition as we continue to provide new programming and product offerings."
"The Bruins are getting ready to start training camp, the Red Sox are chasing a playoff spot and NESN Daily is getting ready for a special NASCAR edition to discuss the upcoming Sylvania 300 in New Hampshire all of this making it an opportune time for Time Warner Cable customers in North and South Carolina to begin receiving NESN National," said NESN president and CEO Sean McGrail "We're sure fans in the Carolinas will enjoy our regular pre and post-game programming, New England sports news coverage, and the many other games and programs that are now available."