TruTV Leans Into Sports and Betting in Attempted Refresh

Posted on: March 11, 2024, 08:40h. 

Last updated on: March 12, 2024, 11:00h.

With the NCAA Tournament kicking off later this month, this is the time of year that television viewers are reminded about the relevance of TruTV. The rest of the year, not so much. But parent company Warner Bros. Discovery is looking to rejuvenate the network by leaning more into sports and sports wagering.

The TruTV logo. The network is planning more sports programming, including a betting show. (Image: Cord Cutters News)

On Thursday night, TruTV will debut TNT Sports Update and a betting show called The Line. The network will also simulcast sporting events, including the NBA, NHL, and the NCAA Tournament, that also air on sister networks TBS and TNT.

By creating a primetime block of sports programming on TruTV, in addition to our existing premium live sports on TNT and TBS, we are now able to deliver a more comprehensive sports offering for our fans, while generating additional growth opportunities for our sports division and strategic business and league partners,” said Luis Silberwasser, chairman and CEO of TNT Sports, in a statement.

In addition to its annual March Madness coverage, TruTV is mostly known for airing reality content such as  Impractical Jokers and World’s Dumbest. 

NBA Could Help TruTV Sports, Wagering Efforts

New York-based Warner Bros./Discovery is a massive media conglomerate, with brands including Animal Planet, Cinemax, HBO, TBS, and TNT. There have been lingering rumors that the latter could eventually wade into the sports wagering realm. TruTV would likely be part of that equation.

The NBA would likely set the stage for the networks to expand its reach in sports betting. That could be the avenue through which TruTV recreates itself and appeals to more bettors and fans in the process.

The NBA on TNT, which is in its 36th season, could be an ideal platform through which Warner Brothers/Discovery could make a sports betting play, particularly when considering the popularity of the NBA among bettors.

TruTV could use the refresh. According to Kagan data, the network generates just 33 cents in revenue per subscriber on a monthly basis, while TNT commands $2.97 per subscriber and ESPN garners $10.08 per subscriber per month.

Potential Gaming Partners

For now, it appears as though The Line will be TruTV’s foray into sports wagering. But that exposure could grow as other programming on the network potentially delves into the realm of betting.

As for possible gaming partners for TruTV, those weren’t mentioned in the statement. But TBS and TNT have preexisting relationships with FanDuel and DraftKings, the two largest online sportsbook operators in the U.S.

Additionally, The NBA on TNT star and retired NBA legend Charles Barkley is a FanDuel celebrity endorser.