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NHL to team with Major League Baseball on streaming app, cable TV channel

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NEW YORK, N.Y. - The National Hockey League and Major League Baseball have agreed to an unusual sports partnership.

Major League Baseball Advanced Media, MLB's Internet and interactive media company, will distribute the hockey league's Internet streaming service and run the NHL's cable-television network as part of an alliance announced Tuesday.

The video distribution rights do not apply to Canada, where Rogers Communications is the rights holder.

Terms of six-year contact between the two sports leagues weren't announced.

The deal entrusts the baseball league with the NHL GameCenter app that allows fans to watch most hockey games live on smartphones, tablets and other Internet-connected devices.

MLBAM will also operate NHL.com and team websites, though the NHL and its teams retain editorial control across all platforms.

Major League Baseball is taking over the app rights from NeuLion in January. The NHL's cable-TV network will operate from the Secaucus, N.J., headquarters of the MLB network.

"As the market leader, MLBAM is uniquely qualified to assist us in giving hockey fans a richer, more immersive experience with the game," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday in a release. "MLBAM is also the right partner because they have the expertise to help us deliver new and exciting products to our fans, who crave compelling digital content."

? With files from The Canadian Press

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