NBA to sell parts of non-national TV games, introduce micropayments

NBA fans will be able to buy the right to see parts of non-national TV games for a small fee, the league and its digital partner Turner Sports announced Tuesday.

The offering is set to begin in the 2018-19 season.

The league and Turner began offering League Pass games on an individual basis for $6.99, but Tuesday's announcement signals the first time a major sports league is offering fans the chance to buy parts of games.

The fees have not been set, but the topic came up Friday night when those who use push notifications on their NBA app received messages offering them the chance to watch the fourth quarter of the game between the Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder for 99 cents.

Sources said that the league will continue to experiment by offering fans various fees to see a certain percentage of a game.

The offering could be dependent on a close game in an important matchup down the stretch, a team making an epic comeback or a player in the midst of setting some sort of record.

The new offering won't change what has been offered in the past. Fans can still get a certain team's games for the season and continue to pay $6.99 individually for games that intrigue them.

Fear of cannibalizing the NBA League Pass revenue had once seemed to make it harder to sell fans individual games, then quarters. But younger fans are used to making micropayments and buying things on impulse, especially when they pop up in their social feeds.

The NBA is expected to use its social media community -- more than 1.4 billion likes and followers -- to push notifications of live offers.