CBC Television announced today the first competitors to sign on to participate in CBC Television’s BATTLE OF THE BLADES. NHL Hall of Famer and fan favourite Lanny McDonald, NHL Hall of Famer and six-time Stanley Cup-winner Glenn Anderson, legendary enforcers Tie Domi and Bob Probert, two-time Stanley Cup-winner and HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA analyst Craig Simpson, and two-time Stanley Cup-winner Stéphane Richer will go head-to-head in this fierce competition. These hockey heavyweights will be paired with some of Canada’s top female figure skaters in a competitive and thrilling pairs showdown beginning this October.
“Whatever else you can say about Canadians, they know hockey and they know figure skating—and are passionate about both,” said Kirstine Layfield, CBC Television’s executive director of network programming. “We’re going to bring the two together in a way that’s never been seen before. It’s going to be great.”
CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA’s Ron MacLean and Canadian figure skating icon Kurt Browning host the seven-week BATTLE OF THE BLADES series. Browning’s storied international career and his infectious personality combined with MacLean’s deep-rooted knowledge and passion for hockey will provide viewers with the insight and intricacies of both sports and their unlikely combination.
All-Star forward Probert holds the Detroit Red Wings’ franchise record for career penalty minutes. Domi is one of the most popular players to ever don a Toronto Maple Leafs jersey and ranks third overall in penalty minutes in NHL history.
A gentleman both on and off the ice, McDonald’s contribution to his teams and community earned him both the Bill Masterson and King Clancy Memorial trophies. Simpson’s influence extends from playing to coaching and currently as an analyst on CBC’s HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA. Simpson is the last Edmonton Oiler to score over 50 goals in one season. Richer is one of the all-time leaders in playoff overtime goals and is the last Montreal Canadien to score over 50 goals in a season. Anderson is considered one of the all-time great playoff performers with 214 playoff points, ranking him fourth overall in playoff history.
BATTLE OF THE BLADES is the brainchild of Kevin Albrecht, and development of Sandra Bezic. BATTLE OF THE BLADES executive producers are John Brunton, Barbara Bowlby and Kevin Albrecht. It is produced by Insight Productions in association with CBC Television.