When Disney got approval for the merger with 20th Centerury Fox there was a very important caveat. The company had to divest itself from the numerous Fox regional sports networks (RSNs). This meant that Disney could not control both ESPN and the 22 Fox-owned networks that targeted specific segments of the country. There a number of networks like “Sports South” and such that could have made Disney almost a monopoly in the sports world had things not been put into place ahead of the deal.
The new Fox company which has been building itself up around sports in general is emerging as a likely buyer of the 22 RSNs. This would allow the Fox Sports brand to survive and possibly thrive giving it a chance to market its products and grow the brand with the backing of NBA, NCAA Football and Basketball, Racing and other sports events.
Fox has spent decades building and branding RSNs in nearly every corner of the US and is the home to many NBA and NHL broadcasts every week. The idea the networks it would end up back in the hands of those that envisioned them in the first place means that they will likely be handled in a way where they can thrive.
Reporting has though included other possible suiters for the channels including Amazon and Comcast, who bitterly competed with Disney for the rights to purchase the Fox assets in the first place.