NBA Renews Snapchat Pact, Plans to Boost Content Nearly Threefold This Season

The NBA is back on Snapchat’s court for the 2016-17 season, with the league planning to nearly triple content produced for the youth-skewing communications and media app.

New this season: Fans attending games will have access to Snapchat’s NBA-themed Bitmoji emoji (pictured above) and selfie Lenses. It’s the first partnership Snap-owned Bitmoji has struck with a sports league for a custom emoji pack.

As it did for the 2015-16 season, Snapchat will again cover weekly NBA games via Live Stories, including tentpole events like the All-Star game and NBA Finals.

Starting on Oct. 25 for the NBA’s opening night, Snapchat users will be able to explore the first Discover edition and watch Live Story coverage of Kevin Durant’s first game as a Golden State Warrior; the season opener of 2016 champs Cleveland Cavaliers against the New York Knicks and the Cavs’ ring ceremony; and a compilation of league rivalries and preseason chatter.

Snapchat users will also be able to add “scoreboard” geofilters to their photo and video snaps, which update posts with the current score of the game they’re watching.

Popular on Variety

Snap (Snapchat’s new corporate name) has similar deals with sports leagues including the NFL and Major League Baseball. The company this fall plans to start selling $130 video-enabled sunglasses called Spectacles to let Snapchat users capture and upload 10-second clips.

More Digital

  • Activision-Blizzard-Overwatch-League-Grand-Finals-2018

    YouTube Scores Exclusive Streaming for Activision Blizzard's E-Sports, Including Overwatch and Call of Duty Leagues

    YouTube landed a multiyear deal as the exclusive live-streaming partner for Activision Blizzard’s e-sports events worldwide, including Overwatch League, Call of Duty League, Hearthstone Esports. The agreement (which excludes China) promises to give a big boost to YouTube Gaming, the video giant’s dedicated home for all things related to games. It’s also a loss for [...]

  • Grammy Moments Brandi Carlile John Legend

    What's a Grammy Moment Worth? Brandi Carlile, John Legend, Label Execs Weigh In

    In simpler times, an artist could see album sales spike to over 500,000 in the days after a Grammy Awards broadcast appearance. That was Santana’s experience in 2000. Following a performance on the show and eight Grammy wins, “Supernatural” flew off the shelves — a gold certification from one key look. Today, that seems downright [...]

  • Netflix-logo-N-icon

    Netflix Sets Up Italian Office in Rome (EXCLUSIVE)

    After opening its doors in Paris last week, Netflix is setting up an office in Rome, Variety can reveal. The streaming giant has confirmed that it will move its Italian team, which is now based in Amsterdam, to new offices in the Italian capital, where they are currently seeking a space. The process will take [...]

  • Jill Dickerson - Snap

    Snap Taps OWN's Jill Dickerson to Lead Unscripted Programming

    Jill Dickerson has left OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network after more than a decade to join Snap Inc., the parent company of Snapchat, as a senior member of the Snap Originals team. A seasoned reality TV exec, Dickerson will help lead the development of Snap’s docu-series and unscripted programming and is based at the company’s Santa [...]

  • Deadspin - Jim Rich

    Deadspin to Relaunch Under New Editor Jim Rich, Following Mass Staff Resignation

    Deadspin, the irreverant sports news and opinion digital-media brand that has been dormant since last November, is going to get re-spun under newly hired editor-in-chief Jim Rich. G/O Media named the veteran editor and journalist, who formerly served as editor-in-chief of the New York Daily News, executive editor at Huffpost, and night sports editor at [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content