SPORTS

Start of basketball season postponed over TV rights

The start of Greece’s elite basketball championship, the A1 League, due to start this weekend was postponed indefinitely on Wednesday after clubs failed to reach agreement on a television rights deal, league organizers ESAKE said.

Twelve of the 14 teams rejected a proposed offer of 1.3 million euros from the state broadcaster ERT which represents a 40 percent reduction from last season’s deal.

“Having full knowledge of the current economic conditions prevailing in our country, we still feel that the treatment of professional basketball is inconsistent with the reliability and strengths of the teams,» ESAKE said in a statement.

“The board of ESAKE, with regret, has decided to indefinitely postpone the start of the A1 League 2012-13.”

Media reports said clubs were asking for around 2 million euros. Olympiakos Pireaus and Panathinaikos have separate television deals worth a reported 1.2 million euros each a season.

ESAKE and the clubs are expected to hold further discussions next week with ERT as well as other satellite and cable channels.

[Reuters]