FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, October 10th, 2016
2016-17 NHL REGULAR SEASON BEGINS THIS WEEK WITH “WEDNESDAY NIGHT RIVALRY” DOUBLEHEADER ON NBCSN
2016 Stanley Cup Playoff Rematches This Wednesday on Opening Night – Blues-Blackhawks at 8 p.m. ET, Followed by Kings-Sharks at 10:30 p.m. ET – Coverage Starts at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN with NHL Live
Sidney Crosby and Pittsburgh Penguins Raise 2016 Stanley Cup Championship Banner vs. Alex Ovechkin and Washington Capitals on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN
NBC Sports Celebrates Storied Legacy of NHL Coverage As NHL Centennial Begins in 2017
New NHL Overtime Post-Game Show – “Every Goal, Every Game, Every Night”
STAMFORD, Conn. – Oct. 10, 2016 – Coming off the most-watched full NHL regular season on cable in 22 years, NBC Sports Group continues its storied history of hockey coverage this week with three premier “Face-Off” matchups to begin the 2016-17 NHL regular season and a new NHL Overtime post-game show.
Coverage begins with a Wednesday Night Rivalry doubleheader on Oct. 12 at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, when Patrick Kane and the Chicago Blackhawks host Vladimir Tarasenko and the St. Louis Blues in a rematch of their first-round playoff series from a season ago. The action shifts to San Jose at 10:30 p.m. ET, when Joe Thornton and the defending Western Conference champion Sharks welcome Jonathan Quick and the Los Angeles Kings in a rematch of their first-round series from last season. Coverage begins with NHL Live at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
NBCSN’s “Face-Off” coverage continues on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, with one of the great rivalries in hockey, when Sidney Crosby and the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins raise their 2016 championship banner to the rafters, and host Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals. NBCSN will present a Central Division matchup on Friday night at 8 p.m. ET, when the Blackhawks travel to Nashville to face P.K. Subban and the Predators.
Four-time Emmy Award-winner Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick (play-by-play), U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame member Eddie Olczyk (analyst), and Emmy Award-winner Pierre McGuire (‘Inside-the-Glass analyst) will call Blues-Blackhawks from United Center in Chicago, Ill., and Capitals-Penguins from PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, Pa. John Forslund (play-by-play) and Brian Boucher (‘Inside-the-Glass’ analyst) will provide commentary for Kings-Sharks from SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., while Gord Miller (play-by-play) and Boucher will call Blackhawks-Predators from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.
Opening night coverage begins Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET with NHL Live, hosted by Liam McHugh. He will be joined by analysts and former NHL players Mike Milbury and Keith Jones, as well as veteran NHL insider Bob McKenzie, providing pre-game, intermission, and post-game analysis.
Emrick, Olczyk and McGuire will continue their role as NBC Sports Group’s lead NHL game commentary team. Kenny Albert, Forslund, Miller, and Chris Cuthbert will also handle play-by-play duties for NHL games on NBCSN throughout the year.
In addition to McGuire and Boucher, Joe Micheletti and Ray Ferraro will also serve as ‘Inside-the-Glass’ analysts throughout the season.
NBC Sports Group’s NHL studio team returns for the 2016-17 season, with Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury and Keith Jones. Studio coverage will also feature hosts Kathryn Tappen and Paul Burmeister, as well as analysts Jeremy Roenick and Anson Carter. Hockey Insiders Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger return for their third seasons with NBC Sports Group, providing team reports and league news throughout the season.
NEW NHL OVERTIME POST-GAME SHOW – “EVERY GOAL, EVERY GAME, EVERY NIGHT”
NBC Sports Group’s NHL post-game show, NHL Overtime, will now feature “Every goal, every game, every night” following each night of NHL game telecasts on NBCSN. NHL Overtime typically airs for 30 minutes, immediately following game coverage on NBCSN, and features recaps and analysis from NBC Sports Group’s NHL studio team.
Last week, Emrick, Olczyk, McGuire and executive producer Sam Flood previewed the 2016-17 season on a media conference call. On the call, Flood announced a new initiative for the upcoming season – “Star Nights” – which will highlight a star player from each team in a matchup, and follow him throughout the night. Click here for more information.
NBC SPORTS GROUP CELEBRATES STORIED LEGACY OF NHL COVERAGE
The NHL will commence its Centennial celebration in 2017, and NBC Sports Group is woven in the fabric of U.S. hockey coverage, dating back more than 70 years. In honor of the Centennial, following is a look back at some of NBC Sports’ historic NHL moments.
- February 25, 1940 – W2XBS-TV, which would become WNBC4 in New York, provides its first-ever telecast of an NHL game, featuring the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers from Madison Square Garden in New York.
- April 10, 1966 – NBC presents its first-ever national NHL Stanley Cup Playoff broadcast, and its first-ever NHL game in color, when the Chicago Blackhawks host the Detroit Red Wings in Game 2 of the NHL semi-finals from Chicago Stadium. Win Elliot provides play-by-play for the game alongside Bill Mazer, as the Red Wings defeated the Blackhawks 7-0.
- January 7, 1973 – NBC begins the first of three seasons of NHL regular-season coverage with its Hockey Game of the Week, featuring the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks. Tim Ryan handles play-by-play duties from 1973-75, alongside NHL Hall-of-Famer Ted Lindsay and Brian McFarlane. In addition to its regular-season coverage, NBC televises select Stanley Cup Playoff and Final games during this time. NBC also introduces Peter Puck, a popular hockey puck-shaped cartoon character that appears on NBC’s NHL broadcasts. It was created by NBC executive Donald Carswell.
- 1990-1994 – In Pittsburgh in 1990, NBC provides coverage of the NHL All-Star Game, the first NHL game on a broadcast network game since Game 6 of the 1980 Stanley Cup Final, and the first time a national audience watches superstars Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky.
- May 19, 2004 – NBC Sports acquires NHL broadcast rights for 2004-05 and 2005-06 (the 2004-05 season was not played due to a lockout). NBC’s coverage begins with a regionalized tripleheader on Jan. 14, 2006, featuring New York vs. Detroit, Colorado vs. Philadelphia, and Dallas vs. Boston. The agreement is extended in 2007 and 2009, before the current 10-year deal, which is signed in 2011 and runs through 2021.
- 2005-06 – NBC Sports introduces the ‘Inside-the-Glass’ broadcast position for its NHL game telecasts. Now the industry standard in hockey broadcasts, the position is created by NBC Sports executive producer Sam Flood in order to bring fans closer to the action by providing a unique perspective. Pierre McGuire serves as NBC Sports’ lead Inside-the-Glass analyst and won the 2013 Sports Emmy for Outstanding Sports Reporter in that role.
- January 1, 2008 – Co-created by NBC Sports President of Programming Jon Miller, NBC televises the first ever NHL Winter Classic, featuring the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres, from Ralph Wilson Stadium outside of Buffalo, N.Y. The Penguins win 2-1 in a shootout, with Sidney Crosby scoring the winner. The annual NHL Winter Classic regularly produces the most-watched regular-season games on record, peaking with Washington at Pittsburgh in 2011 at Heinz Field, which averaged 4.525 million viewers on NBC.
- February 20, 2011 – NBC Sports presents the first ever Hockey Day In America, which celebrates America’s affinity for hockey and includes multiple national NHL broadcasts. The annual event has featured numerous marquis matchups, including last year’s Blackhawks-Wild Stadium Series game from TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn. Coverage has featured on-site broadcasts from various locations, including Lake Placid, N.Y., home of the 1980 ‘Miracle on Ice.’
- June 15, 2011 – The Boston Bruins defeat the Vancouver Canucks in Game 7 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final on NBC in what is the most-watched NHL game on record, averaging 8.54 million viewers. NBC Sports Group has televised every NHL Stanley Cup Playoff game nationally since 2012.
- January 23, 2013 – NBCSN presents the Boston Bruins and the New York Rangers in the first-ever Wednesday Night Rivalry Dubbed “the hottest new brand in sports” by Forbes in its inaugural season, the exclusive Wednesday night window features the biggest rivalries in the sport and has become destination viewing for NHL fans each week on NBCSN.
- January 25, 2014 – Dovetailing off of the successful Winter Classic games, NBC Sports presents the first-ever NHL Stadium Series outdoor game, featuring the Anaheim Ducks and Los Angeles Kings from Dodger Stadium on NBCSN. Other locations include Yankee Stadium in New York and Soldier Field in Chicago, which featured an NBC primetime showdown between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks.
- September 30, 2015 – NBCSN televises the first-ever Kraft Hockeyville USA pre-season game, featuring the Tampa Bay Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins, from Johnstown, Pa. Johnstown is named Kraft Hockeyville USA after a fan vote, and is awarded $150,000 in arena upgrades. The event celebrates the impact of hockey in local communities across the country.
- 2016-17 – NBC Sports Group is scheduled to televise 106 NHL regular-season games, more than ever before. Since the 2005-06 season, regular-season cable viewership on Versus/NBCSN has increased 132%.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT RIVALRY: BLUES AT BLACKHAWKS – WEDNESDAY AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN
The 2016-17 NHL regular season kicks off on NBCSN with a Central Division Wednesday Night Rivalry clash between the Blues and Blackhawks in Chicago. St. Louis is coming off of its most successful season in recent history, after defeating the Chicago Blackhawks in a thrilling seven-game first-round series before eventually losing to San Jose in the Western Conference Final. Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko led the club with 40 goals last season. St. Louis will have a new look this season, following the departure of long-time captain David Backes to Boston.
Chicago returns most of its club from a season ago, following its disappointing loss to the Blues. Patrick Kane is coming off a dominant regular season in which he totaled 106 points (46g/60a), 17 more points than any player in the league. Artemi Panarin is coming off an impressive 2015-16 campaign in which he won the Calder Trophy as the league’s rookie of the year with 77 points (30g/47a).
KINGS AT SHARKS – WEDNESDAY AT 10:30 P.M. ET ON NBCSN
The Kings and Sharks renew their rivalry on opening night on NBCSN, as San Jose looks to follow up last season’s run to the Stanley Cup Final with another strong year. The Sharks return veteran forwards Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau, who led San Jose to the Cup Final along with dynamic forwards Logan Couture and captain Joe Pavelski.
The Kings hope to avenge their loss to San Jose in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs last year. 2016-17 will be big for the Kings, who are celebrating their 50th season as an NHL franchise and will host the 2017 NHL All-Star Game. Key returners for the Kings this season include 2016 Selke Trophy winner Anze Kopitar, 2016 Norris Trophy winner Drew Doughty, and goaltender Jonathan Quick, who ranked second in the NHL last season with 40 wins.
CAPITALS AT PENGUINS – THURSDAY AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN
The Penguins raise their 2016 Stanley Cup Championship banner to the rafters on Thursday night at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN when they host the Capitals. Pittsburgh knocked out Washington in the second round of last season’s playoffs en route to their title. Most of the Penguins’ championship roster is back for 2016-17, including Phil Kessel, who led the Penguins in scoring in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Sidney Crosby, who won the 2016 Conn Smythe Trophy, finished third in the NHL last season with 85 points (36g/49a).
The Capitals are coming off a 2015-16 season in which they dominated the regular season, winning the Presidents’ Trophy with 120 points, 11 points ahead of the next best team. Alex Ovechkin was dominant offensively with his seventh 50-goal season. Goaltender Braden Holtby was equally impressive in net for the Caps, posting a 48-9-7 record en route to the Vezina Trophy.
BLACKHAWKS AT PREDATORS – FRIDAY AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN
The Predators enter 2016-17 following one of their most successful seasons in franchise history, after reaching the second round of the postseason before losing to the Sharks. Nashville made waves in the offseason, trading captain and long-time Predator Shea Weber to Montreal for P.K. Subban, in a blockbuster deal of superstar defensemen. This will be the first full season in Nashville for forward Ryan Johansen, who was acquired in the middle of the 2015-16 season.
Following is this week’s NHL coverage on NBCSN:
|Wed., October 12||NHL Live||NBCSN||7 p.m.|
|Wednesday Night Rivalry – St. Louis at Chicago||NBCSN||8 p.m.|
|Wednesday Night Rivalry – Los Angeles at San Jose||NBCSN||10:30 p.m.|
|NHL Overtime||NBCSN||1 a.m.*|
|Thurs., October 13||NHL Live||NBCSN||7 p.m.|
|Washington at Pittsburgh||NBCSN||8 p.m.|
|NHL Overtime||NBCSN||10:30 p.m.*|
|Fri., October 14||NHL Live||NBCSN||7:30 p.m.|
|Chicago at Nashville**||NBCSN||8 p.m.|
|NHL Overtime||NBCSN||10:30 p.m.*|
*immediately following game coverage
**blacked out in Chicago
THE NHL ON NBCSPORTS.COM AND THE NBC SPORTS APP: NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app — NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, tablets, and connected TVs — will provide live streaming coverage of the 2016-17 NHL regular season via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value to for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms.
NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app are powered by Playmaker Media and available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Windows Store, Roku Channel Store, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.
2016-17 REGULAR SEASON COVERAGE ON NBC & NBCSN
NBC Sports Group will deliver coverage of 106 NHL regular-season games during the 2015-16 season, featuring 14 games on NBC and 92 games on NBCSN. All games will be streamed live via NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Click here for more information on NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive NHL coverage this season.
NBC SPORTS REGIONAL NETWORKS
NBC Sports Regional Networks, which serve top NHL markets such as Boston (Bruins), Philadelphia (Flyers), Washington D.C. (Capitals), Chicago (Blackhawks) and the Bay Area (Sharks), will air more than 300 live NHL games and surround the 2016-17 NHL season with in-depth news, analysis and original programming on the teams that matter most.
-NBC SPORTS GROUP-