"We are committed to the Arena Football League and its exciting brand of football," John Skipper, executive vice president for content at ESPN, said in a statement. "We will help grow the league across all of our multimedia platforms. As the league grows, so will our business, and we see a bright future for us both."
Similar to recent major ESPN content acquisitions, the agreement entails a broad range of rights among the network's 15 platforms, including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN on ABC, ESPN Classic, ESPN.com, Spanish-language ESPN Deportes and ESPN360. ESPN also gains the right to both air and syndicate AFL games through ESPN International.
ESPN will televise a minimum of 17 regular-season games and nine playoff games -- including a minimum three wild-card games, three divisional playoff games, both conference championships and the Arena Bowl -- on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC.