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MLB and NBA Games Could Come to Max This Fall

Professional sports logos with Max logo

Confirmed: Live sports arrive on Max this October

On October 5, Warner Bros. Discovery will officially launch its Bleacher Report Sports Add-On via Max. All Max subscribers will get free access to the add-on through February 29, 2024, when its regular $9.99-a-month price kicks in.

The add-on will carry every live game airing on Warner Bros. Discovery linear networks like TNT, TBS, and truTV. That gives Max subscribers access to an immense sports catalog—including nationally televised MLB, NBA, and NHL matchups.

The Take

Watching the MLB playoffs this fall could get more manageable with the streaming service Max jumping into the game with a new sports tier. While nothing is confirmed yet, insiders suggest that playoff games airing on the Warner Bros. Discovery-owned channel TBS could be simulcast on the company’s streaming service.

Baseball playoffs are the first step in Max’s sports plans—the streaming service hopes to add NBA, NHL, and NCAA games, including March Madness, and gain subscribers who are cutting the cord but still want to watch sports.

However, adding sports to Max could increase the cost of the service for customers. As JB Perrette, CEO and president of global streaming and games, said during the company’s conference call, “Our view is sports is such a premium offering with a very focused and passionate fan base that generally … it needs to be monetized incrementally.”

The technical issues of launching live sports content on the streaming service are also daunting and could remind viewers of the technical problems when Max launched in May.

But the company appears committed to launching live sports in October with the MLB playoffs, according to a report in CNBC. The games would also air on TBS, per the company’s deal with the MLB. No games would appear exclusively on Max … yet.

Which sports leagues would be available on Max?

Warner Bros. Discovery, the parent company of Max, holds the rights for games across four different leagues, including the MLB, NHL, NBA, and NCAA. Company CEO David Zaslav told analysts on the quarterly earnings call that the company owns “the digital rights to our sports. So we have the ability, for no incremental cost, to put that content on our [streaming] platforms.”

While the company is hoping to start streaming games in early October with the MLB playoffs, they may also have luck later that month when the NBA begins its regular season. Games that air on TNT could also stream on Max, allowing Warner Bros. Discovery to show off its streaming capabilities during a battle for league broadcast rights.

Right now, though, there are few details about when the sports plan would launch and how much it would cost.

Max currently costs $9.99 per month for a plan with ads and $15.99 for an ad-free streaming experience.

How can I stream sports now?

Many options exist for streaming and watching sports, depending on which league you’re looking for. Most games are available on YouTube TV and Hulu + Live TV, but depending on the league, you may want to invest in ESPN+ or a package that includes regional sports networks.

Overall, we recommend YouTube TV and Hulu + Live TV for streaming sports games, with ESPN+, Peacock, and Sling TV also appearing in the top five.

As for the MLB playoffs, games will air across ABC, FOX, FS1, TBS, ESPN, ESPN2, and MLB Network, with the World Series airing exclusively on FOX. You can stream every MLB playoff game on services like DIRECTV STREAM and Sling TV; just be sure you pick a plan with all those channels.

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