AZN Television and the NBA Sign new Agreement to Provide NBA Programming for Asian-Americans

NEW YORK, August 29, 2005 — AZN Television, the cable channel featuring programming for Asian-Americans, and the National Basketball Association (NBA) have entered into a partnership to provide NBA-related programming for Asian-Americans. The announcement was made today by Steve Smith, Managing Director, AZN Television and International Networks, and Gregg Winik, NBA Entertainment Executive Vice President. The deal reflects the growing interest in the NBA among Asian-Americans.

“Yao in the NBA" debuts October 16th
NBAE/Getty Images
AZN will produce the original series “Hoopguys,” which will follow the antics of three Asian-American NBA fans on a season-long quest to experience as many NBA games as possible. In addition to the original elements, the show will incorporate highlights from around the league. The series will premiere in January 2006. The NBA will provide footage for 22 episodes to air during the 2005-06 season and 36 episodes to be televised during the 2006-07 season.

AZN also will premiere the documentary series “Yao in the NBA,” which chronicles the Houston Rockets All-Star’s second season in the NBA. Originally co-produced by the Shanghai Media Group and NBA Entertainment, the series will be re-voiced in English and make its U.S. debut on AZN Television in October, airing Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET.

“This partnership between AZN Television and the NBA promises to provide innovative new approaches to how the game is enjoyed by its Asian-American fans,” said Smith. “There are millions of Asian-American basketball fans and Yao Ming’s success has definitely increased the popularity of the sport among this audience. Through this deal with the NBA, AZN will create original programming to meet the growing demand for NBA programming among Asian-American viewers.”

“AZN Television’s ability to reach a fast-growing population of young Asian-Americans fits well with our strategy to form partnerships that connect us directly with our multicultural audience,” said Winik.

The agreement gives AZN the rights to produce and air up to 10 NBA specials for each of the next two seasons. Each special will focus on a particular event or NBA-related topic relevant to Asian-American viewers.

Learn more at AZN Television