Protocol to sell media, sponsorship rights to 3×3 basketball event

Protocol Sports Marketing, the Toronto-based agency, has been appointed to distribute international media and sponsorship rights to the 5 Tournament Pro Basketball Invitational, a new 3-on-3 basketball competition that will take place in Las Vegas, Nevada from 19 to 29 July.

The ‘PBI’ event at the Orleans Hotel will feature former NBA players, international basketball players and college rivals.

Players who will take part include former Miami Heat point guard Mario Chalmers, along with Joe Johnson and James White, formerly of the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Knicks, respectively. Meanwhile, former Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks centre Eddy Curry will represent Chicago, who will compete against teams from Toronto, Philadelphia, Sacramento and Texas.

The PBI games will be played over seven broadcast dates, including five group-stage dates comprising three games per day, followed by the semi-finals and the finals.

Protocol said that it is “presently discussing international media rights with broadcast and streaming platforms all over the world”. The tournament will be shown in the US on Integrated Sports Pay-Per-View via cable, satellite and digital pay-per-view, as well by FITE.TV, the streaming platform more commonly associated with boxing coverage.

Protocol Sports Marketing, which established itself in the industry through the sale of broadcast rights to boxing, made moves into basketball last year when it was hired by Spain’s top-tier Liga ACB to market media rights in key territories in Asia and Eurasia.

The agency said: “Organised by Jerry Castello and USA Natural Patches, in association with Boyd Gaming, the Professional Basketball Invitation will serve as the perfect gateway back to professional basketball for fans all over the world that are starved for live sports, and basketball in particular.”

Lowell Conn, Protocol’s president, said that the agency, Castello and his team would “collectively nurture meaningful sponsorship and international broadcast opportunities for the Pro Basketball Invitational”.

Conn added: “We believe that PBI’s unique format combined with its internationally-recognised player base could represent an excellent opportunity for sponsors looking to be associated with a fantastic, new and first-rate basketball property; and will provide excellent live sports programming for international broadcasters whose audiences are eager for basketball to return.”