If we re right, this poses a long-term strategic risk for these firms, analysts including Jason Bazinet wrote in a research note.

Citigroup downgraded Scripps and Discovery to sell from neutral and maintained a neutral rating for Viacom.Hulu, the online video service co-owned by 21st Century Fox Inc., Walt Disney Co. and Comcast Corp., is said to be planning a live TV package of channels from its owners and their peers.

Because the three represent the largest buyers of sports rights in the U.S., Citigroup expects one Hulu bundle to be sports-centric -- what it termed NewLu.

Discovery slumped 3.3 percent to $26.55 and Viacom lost 1.7 percent to $38.74.Disney Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger confirmed Hulu s plans to become a cable-like service Wednesday, saying the move will help his company as a part owner of Hulu and as a programmer.

Media companies and pay-TV distributors are beginning to offer smaller packages of live channels as an alternative to costly cable and satellite service and to draw new viewers to their channels.

Sports content is unique: it s not fungible with Web-based video offerings from Netflix and Amazon, they wrote in the note.

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