Orlando Pride has finalized a TV deal bringing the team’s next four home matches to live television on Bright House Sports Network on Channel 47 (Ch. 1147 HD).
Fans can tune into the matches with play-by-play from Austin Lyon and color commentary from Eddie Rodriguez. The matches will be available to Bright House subscribers in the Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Sarasota territories.
The following matches will be televised:
- Thursday, June 23 . Houston Dash . 7:30 p.m.
- Sunday, June 26 . Portland Thorns FC . 5:00 p.m.
- Sunday, July 10 . Boston Breakers . 5 p.m.
- Saturday, July 16 . Chicago Red Stars . 7:30 p.m.
“We’ve worked hard to finalize this deal with Bright House Sports Network and we couldn’t be happier to secure this opportunity with our team,” said Orlando City SC Founder and President Phil Rawlins. “Our fans across Central Florida will be able to enjoy these four matches on television and we are proud to be doing this with Bright House, who is a strong supporter of our Club’s three teams.”
In just its first season in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), Orlando has quickly become the most in-demand team in the league. Through its first nine games, the Pride lead all 10 teams with nearly 500,000 views on matches streamed online – more than 110,000 total views than the second-ranked team, Portland Thorns FC.
The broadcast schedule kicks off with the Pride’s next home game on June 23, which sees the Houston Dash come to Camping World Stadium for the first time after the Pride’s inaugural home game, a thrilling 3-1 victory in front of a record-breaking 23,403 fans. That match saw over 91,000 fans tune in online, the second-highest watched match across the league. In addition, over 500,000 fans watched the game through Pride forward Alex Morgan’s Facebook page on Facebook Live.
On June 26 the Pride will welcome the Thorns for a rematch of the Club’s first-ever game, which saw nearly 100,000 total online views – the highest watched game across the NWSL thus far.
“Bright House Sports Network is proud to showcase the best women soccer players in the world with our telecasts of the Orlando Pride,” said Bright House VP of Local Programming Alan Mason, “Indeed, we’re honored to bring the Pride’s inaugural season to BHSN viewers along the I-4 corridor from coast to coast.”
Lyon is a seasoned reporter in the Orlando area, after nearly a decade covering local sports. Before joining Bright House Sports Network, Lyon was a reporter for the Orlando Sentinel and currently also provides play-by-play for numerous other Central Florida sporting events.
Rodriguez is a retired professional soccer player with 11 years of experience in MLS, NPSL, CISL, the A-League and the Mexican First Division. A former All-American at the University of New Mexico, Rodriguez played for both the MetroStars and Kansas City Wizards of MLS, as well as Mexico’s Chivas, before retiring and joining the University of Tampa as an assistant coach. A native of Guadalajara, Mexico, Rodriguez also holds a USSF “A” coaching license, the highest coaching certification in the United States.
The Pride join fellow expansion side Houston Dash, who will air two matches this year, as the only two NWSL teams to secure local broadcast deals for the 2016 season.