Sinclair to buy regional Fox Sports networks for $9.6B

NEW YORK — Media company Sinclair Broadcasting Group is buying Fox's regional sports networks for $9.6 billion.

The Walt Disney Co. agreed to sell the networks to get regulatory approval for its $71 billion acquisition of Fox's entertainment assets, which was completed in March.

The 21 networks include exclusive local rights to 42 professional teams, including 14 Major League Baseball teams, 16 National Basketball Association teams and 12 National Hockey League teams. Hunt Valley, Maryland-based Sinclair is also buying Fox College Sports. The New York Yankees' YES Network is being sold separately by Disney.

Byron Allen, CEO of independent television and film studio Entertainment Studios, will be a partner in Diamond Sports Group, the new Sinclair subsidiary that will incorporate the regional sports networks.

The U.S. Justice Department must approve the sale.

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