NBA commissioner David Stern has been around the television industry long enough to know that TV Everywhere -- for which wide-ranging adoption has been a slow (if steady) climb -- will eventually become the norm.
"TV Everywhere is going to be an accepted part of our video and television infrastructure," said Stern, during a keynote conversation with Multichannel News editor-in-chief Mark Robichaux during NewBay Media's first annual NYC TV Week on Monday. "Give it another three or four years, it's going to happen."
Stern was asked if making the league's content available on so many different platforms was putting it in danger of slicing the salami too thin, he argued that's the wrong way to look at it.
"We've changed the 'slicing the salami' rhetoric to 'any time, any place, anywhere on any device,'" he continued. "That's a better way to describe it."
The league is now encouraging its teams, their regional sports networks and distributors to live stream games within the networks' territories on a TV Everywhere basis. "If I'm a regional sports channel and I'm paying our local team a fair amount of money, I want to extract the greatest rights package and value for the consumer," Stern stated.
Stern said that TV Everywhere factors greatly into its current rights deals with its national TV partners: TNT, ESPN and ABC.
"I see streaming as additive, not as slicing off part of the pie," he said.
Next February, Stern will end his 30-year tenure as the league's commissioner, giving way to deputy commissioner Adam Silver. When asked if he shared any advice with the soon-to-be commish, Stern remarked how Silver has worked side-by-side with him for the past 22 years, so there wasn't much he could tell him he didn't already know.
"He's actually been doing my job for the last 10 years; I just haven't been sending the paycheck to him," he quipped.