March 4, 2024

Ben Johns hits a backhand through the kitchen during the PPA Carvana Arizona Grand Slam Pro Men’s Tag Team Championship on February 19, 2023 in Mesa, Arizona.

Yang Xiaolong | Getty Images

Amazon Prime members can now add pickle ball insurance to their list of membership benefits.

Amazon’s The Prime Video streaming platform announced Tuesday that it has signed a multi-year deal with the Professional Pickleball Association for global streaming rights to four live PPA Tour events each year, including 2023-2024. PPA Tour World Championship Series.

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Coverage of Amazon Prime The four-day tournament will begin on Thursday Atlanta Open In Peachtree Corners, Georgia.

Charlie Neiman, head of Amazon’s Prime Video sports partnerships, told CNBC: “When something explodes, it naturally catches our attention.”

Amazon said its coverage will include games from top players such as Ben Johns, Ana Leigh Walters and Anna Bright.

Connor Pardoe, CEO and co-founder of the Pro Pickleball Association, called the deal a “landmark” for the fledgling league.

“It’s important for the professional game, for the evolution of the game as a whole, and a big step forward for professional players,” he added.

Prime’s deal with PPA also deepens its commitment to sports streaming rights, which range from Thursday Night Football to emerging sports leagues and sports documentaries.

Neiman said Amazon has had great success investing in other emerging assets, such as MMA’s One Championship or Overtime Elite Basketball. He said he sees great growth potential in pickleball as well.

“We’re always looking at content and making sure that what we offer on Prime Video reflects the interests of our customers,” he said.

For pickleball fans, the ability to watch their game on a small screen, as well as stream the game, is great news. But patchwork and evolving media strategies have also cluttered places to watch.

More than 20 events on the PPA Tour in 2023 could span various platforms It also includes ABC, Fox, CBS, YouTube, The Tennis Channel and FanDuel.Earlier this month, the PPA Tour announced that ESPN would Eight games covering the league.

“Pickleball is a very popular sport today,” Pardoe said. “It’s really exciting, and no one wants to miss it. Also, no one is really ready to commit to the whole process.”

Pardoe said it will take time to reach more concise and consistent media agreements, but today the league is focused on making its brand “everywhere”.

Pickleball continues to grow rapidly, with an estimated 36 million people picking up a paddle between August 2021 and August 2022, according to a report by the Pickleball Professionals Association. According to the 2023 Sports and Fitness Industry Association Topline Engagement Report, the sport has grown by more than 158% over the past three years.