ESPN will become the official home for three of the four Grand Slam tennis finals starting in 2015. The network and the United States Tennis Association announced a deal on Thursday that will make ESPN the exclusive home of the U.S. Open, beginning with the '15 tourney, for 11 years. The contract is reported to be worth $770 million.
The deal would leave the French Open, which is still on NBC, as the only tennis Grand Slam that doesn't air its championship on ESPN.
The tournament, which had previously been shared by ESPN and CBS, will now be completely super served by ESPN. The network, via ESPN, ESPN2 and its ESPN3 service, will be able to provide coverage of all 17 courts at the National Tennis Center. Previously, only six of the 17 were covered by CBS and ESPN. In addition, ESPN3 will launch coverage every day of the tourney with two exclusive hours from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET. No matter what, if you have cable and an internet connection, you'll be able to see every match.
"Certain sporting events become synonymous with when they are held, and there is no better -- or bigger -- way to celebrate the end of summer than at the US Open in New York," said John Skipper, ESPN's president. "We look forward to capturing every match, every star, every championship and all the drama on this grand stage."
"This wide-ranging and broad relationship with ESPN positions tennis at the forefront of American sports," Dave Haggerty, USTA Chairman of the Board and President, said. "By teaming with the worldwide leader in sports, the USTA will continue to ensure that tennis at every level thrives in the United States."
ESPN will also air the five-week U.S. Open Series, which features tournaments leading up to the U.S. Open. ESPN also gets rights to Arthur Ashe Kids' Day.