NHL video content will be provided to YouTube starting this month under a landmark deal announced on Wednesday between the Internet media company and the US sports organization.
The NHL becomes the first US pro sports league to enter a contract for content and advertising with YouTube, a place where people can watch and share original videos worldwide of a league with players from 20 nations.
The deal comes one day after Google announced completion of a US$1.65 billion acquisition of YouTube, where more than 100 million video clips are seen every day.
The partnership deal for the current season will enable users to access video highlights of NHL games. Footage will be available within 24 hours of the original broadcast along with non-game footage from on and off the ice.
"The partnership will enable the NHL to expose YouTube's vast audience to all of the excitement and drama of the NHL," said league vice president for media Doug Perlman.
The move also allows the 30-team NHL to take advantage of YouTube's content identification and reporting system so the league can protect its copyrighted images and content.
The league will have the option to remove the content from YouTube or allow it to remain and share revenue from advertising placed adjacent to the content.
"By delivering a wide array of daily programming to YouTube, the NHL will be able to connect with its existing fan base and reach a vast new audience," YouTube content vice president Kevin Donahue said.