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Disney CEO: ESPN's standalone service won't arrive anytime soon

Billy Steele
February 5, 2015
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If the rumblings of ESPN's standalone streaming service back in the fall got you all spun up, you may want to take a seat. Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger tempered the excitement this week with statements that indicate a cable-free option for the sports network isn't part of any immediate plans. "We also are mindful of the value of the expanded basic bundle to this company, and we do not believe that there is any reason for us to attempt to take out some of this product, particularly ESPN, quickly or right now," Iger explained. "In other words, there's time."

He went on to say that Disney's other properties, like Marvel and Star Wars, are capable of powering standalone projects on their own, which is certainly interesting to think about. For now, the plan is to keep an eye on the streaming space to see when, or if, it'd be beneficial to cut out the cable companies -- or "middle man," as Iger puts it. ESPN is at least dipping its toe in the water, though, as the sports giant's content is available via the new Sling TV service, and it's offering subscriptions for individual sporting events like the Cricket World Cup. For the time being, it seems the folks at Disney aren't quite ready to follow HBO's lead and cater to the cord cutters... yet.

[Photo credit: Grant Halverson/Getty Images]

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