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Netflix in talks to live stream its first sports event later this year, says report

Man playing golf

Netflix is among the biggest streaming services on the internet, but one thing its subscribers are yet to see on the platform is live sports streaming. That might change as the streaming giant is in talks to create a celebrity-focused golf tournament in Las Vegas, according to a report by Wall Street Journal.

The unannounced tournament will likely feature some stars from Netflix sports documentaries Full Swing and Formula 1: Drive To Survive, according to people familiar with the matter. Netflix has shown interest in live content for a while now. Its first offering was Chris Rock: Selective Outrage, a comedy special live-streamed on March 4 this year.

However, Netflix's recent attempt wasn't the cakewalk it might have expected. The streaming giant had to call off a live stream event for the reality TV show Love Is Blind after facing some technical hiccups. Nonetheless, while the celebrity golf tournament talks are still in the early stages, Netflix will be able to step into the world of sports streaming.

If the event materializes, Netflix's celebrity golf tournament set in Las Vegas could be live-streamed sometime during the fall of this year. Netflix will join the likes of rival streaming services, for instance, Apple TV+ which gives access to the MLS Season Pass. YouTube recently became the home for NFL Sunday Ticket and Prime Video has the rights to stream Thursday Night Football games.

However, stepping into sports streaming will be in contrast with Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos' previous statement that the company has no plans to get into sports streaming anytime soon, adding that Netflix "can get twice as big without sports."

The addition of sports streaming will expand Netflix's current entertainment portfolio which already includes TV shows, movies, documentaries, and more recently mobile games. In recent months, the streaming giant also initiated a crackdown on password-sharing which resulted in a positive influence on its subscriber count.

Source: WSJ (paywalled) via The Verge

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