Over the past decade, the rise of digital video recorders and streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu has changed the way people consume TV content. As time-shifting and binge-watching became more and more popular, people stopped waiting a week for another episode of their favorite show and instead watched what they wanted when they wanted to.
However, there is one type of programming that has proven immune to these trends: sports broadcasting. While many die-hard sports fans have tried to record a game while attending a late aunt’s birthday party, most of them will confirm that watching a game time-shifted just isn’t the same. Data published by Nielsen nicely illustrates sports programming’s relative rise in relevance for TV stations: in 2005, sports programs accounted for 14 percent of the Top 100 live TV programs in the United States. By last year, that figure had risen to 93 percent.
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