The International Swimming League and ESPN have reached a United States rights agreement, the ISL announced Friday, just a day before the league’s scheduled start on Saturday.
- See this weekend’s rosters for Cali Condors, DC Trident
- See this weekend’s roster for Energy Standard
“We are very happy to work with ESPN to ensure that U.S. swim fans will be able to watch the first season of the International Swimming League,” ISL President Konstantin Grigorishin said. “The U.S. audience is vitally important for us as we look to grow our revolutionary new league, and we are delighted that millions of sports fans in the U.S. will be able to access their favourite stars compete against other elite swimmers in the world.”
ESPN holds the rights to the NCAA Championship meets in the United States, though NBC (major rival network to ESPN‘s parent company ABC/Disney) owns the rights to most international swimming. ESPN3 also streamed the Pan American Games this summer, which included swimming.
ESPN3 is accessible to fans who “receive their high-speed internet connection or video subscription from an affiliated service provider.” ESPN3 is also available to U.S. college students and U.S.-based military personnel via on-campus educational and on-base military broadband networks.
For fans in Europe and the Asia-Pacific, the league had an exclusive, two-year broadcast deal with Eurosport. CBC Sports will air meets for Canadian viewers.
The series kicks off on Saturday in Indianapolis, Indiana at 2PM Eastern Time at the IU Natatorium. Among the big names competing are Indiana native Lilly King, World Record holder Katie Ledecky, World Record holder Sarah Sjostrom,
The meet dates and locations are as follows:
- 5-6 October 2019 – IU Natatorium, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
- 12-13 October 2019 – Aquatic Swimming Complex, Naples, Italy
- 19-20 October 2019 – The LISD Westside Aquatic Center, Lewisville, Texas, USA
- 26-27 October 2019 – Duna Area, Budapest, Hungary
- 16-17 November 2019 – Natatorium at the Eppley Recreation Center, College Park, Maryland, USA
- 23-24 November 2019 – London Aquatic Centre, Great Britain
- 20-21 December 2019 – Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA – CHAMPIONSHIP