Broadcast News: Just When Will Conference Finals Start?

This is likely the last “Broadcast News” of the year.  Remember, all of this is speculation, don’t take any of this is Gospel.  We’ll likely all know everything tomorrow.

This was being discussed on XM Home Ice yesterday, but it’s the only way I can see NBC not picking up two games from a potential Pittsburgh Conference Final.  In fact, even if it does go seven, I wouldn’t be shocked if NBC lobbied for Penguins/Bruins or Penguins/Flyers.  Of course, if Montreal comes up with a win tonight, don’t be surprised if Sharks/Blackhawks gets the NBC treatment regardless.

That said, exciting stuff.  If it were to happen, it’d be the first NBC hockey telecast from the state of California since the 2007 Stanley Cup Final, and the first NBC telecast in San Jose since a Kings-Sharks game in April of 2007.  Also the first Sharks telecast on the network since the 2nd round of the ’07 playoffs when they visited the Red Wings twice on the network.  The following are just guesses… but they’re pretty good guesses.

If Pittsburgh and Boston win tonight:

Friday
Bruins/Pens Game 1

Saturday
Blackhawks/Sharks, Game 1

Sunday
Bruins/Pens, Game 2 (NBC)

If Pittsburgh/Montreal win and Philadelphia win, forcing a Game 7 Friday:

Sunday
Blackhawks/Sharks, Game 1 (NBC)

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Steve Lepore is the Managing Editor of Puck the Media. His work has been featured in The Hockey News. Feel free to contact him at stevemlepore@gmail.com

26 Responses to Broadcast News: Just When Will Conference Finals Start?

  1. DW says:

    First, love this website. Thanks for the great info. As for the Sharks/Hawks, there is a concert on Saturday night that would prevent Game 1 from happening that day.

  2. Josh says:

    Did NBC not have one of the games from the ’07 Final from Anaheim? If I remember right, games 1, 2 and 5 were from the Pond. 1 and 2 would’ve gone to Versus, but what about game 5?

  3. Hockey Joe says:

    HP Pavilion is booked with concerts Thurs and Sat, so Hawks/Sharks can only start on Fri or Sun. And NBC’s Sunday game is slotted for 2pm ET, which would be 11am PT, which is probably too early for a game to start unless NBC moves start time back. This is what I think will happen, all depending on Philly/Boston tonight:

    If Bruins win tonight…Hawks/Sharks, Friday and Sunday (NBC maybe moves start to 12pm PT) and East Finals Sat night.

    If Philly wins tonight…both conf finals start Sunday, with East Finals in NBC Sunday slot and West Finals in Sun night VS slot.

  4. canadiansportsfan says:

    Sorry Steve, they may appear to be good guesses, but the Shark Tank isn’t available on Saturday. I think that Hawks-Sharks goes Friday/Sunday if the Sharks win tonight, and starts Sunday otherwise. I think CBC will get game 1 of the East Final if Boston wins tonight on HNIC on Saturday, otherwise it will start Monday night. Once again, just guesses.

  5. Colin says:

    Don’t think the Sharks/Hawks series can start on Saturday. There is a Chayanne concert at HP Pavilion Saturday evening. I can’t see how they’d be able to do two events in one day even if it is a noon PT puck drop.

  6. Richard says:

    What time will the game be played in San Jose? 300pm? Is that good for NBC? Or do they want it earlier which is not really possible out west.

  7. FRANK says:

    shark tank is unavailable on saturday as there is a concert booked

    that probably takes that game out of the running for a sunday am game in san jose

  8. Mike Chen says:

    HP Pavilion have a concert Saturday night, so I’d swap your game 1s if the Bruins win tonight.

  9. nosferatu says:

    Some complications with the scheduling: The Shark Tank has already been booked for this Saturday (and the 2nd Sunday of the round, May 23), so the Sharks-Hawks series will have to start Friday or Sunday.

    Also, with the already-announced start time of 2 p.m. ET (11 a.m. PT) for NBC on Sunday, would the NHLPA really concede such an early game from San Jose? I suppose we could actually see a doubleheader, so to speak, on Sunday, with the game starting in San Jose at like 7 or 8 ET on Versus.

    • canadiansportsfan says:

      There is no reason why the time can’t be moved to 3:00pm ET. They have been scheduling games for 2 ET when possible so they can have OT without going into local news. So I think that the Hawks-Sharks series will start Sunday on NBC, especially if Montreal and Boston win tonight.

  10. kevin says:

    NBC wants Pitt vs Bos/Phil. Actually, Boston would be best if they win in six. Look for alot of favorable calls for the Pens and Bruins tonite….If Montreal does win then they will be playing game 1 Sat nite if possible

    • Josh says:

      Game 1 on Saturday in Boston (if Montreal and Boston both win tonight) would mean either games on back-to-back days (Saturday-Sunday) or at least two days off (Saturday-Tuesday) because Pearl Jam is booked in Boston for Monday.

  11. kevin says:

    If it is Mon/Bos the first game will be Sat nite so CBC can broadcast it back to Canada where everyone sits around their TV on Sat nite waiting for a hockey game to appear……Chi/SJ would be the Sunday NBC game

    • nosferatu says:

      But again, this is based on allowing a game to start at 11 a.m. in San Jose. I don’t know–the league better hope Pittsburgh wins (I know, I know–they always do) to avoid some of these issues. But Montreal didn’t get the Saturday night slot at the start of the series with Pittsburgh–they had to play in the afternoon for NBC. I think U.S. TV partners take precedence, despite NBC not paying a dime.

      • Josh says:

        CBC was fine with that though, because they had Vancouver in the Saturday night slot.

      • Jeremy says:

        Montreal didn’t get the Saturday night slot at the start of the series with Pittsburgh because there was another Canadian team to show – Vancouver. But if Montreal is the only Canadian team in town for round 3, look for that series to start on Saturday night for CBC. (Plus, although NBC’s game was originally scheduled for 2 p.m. ET – and is still listed that way on the web – Mike Emrick told viewers during the last NBC broadcast that the game would start at 3 ET. Was this a slip of the tongue or a fact? Time will only tell.)

    • Josh says:

      Here’s how it is, Kevin: people in Canada don’t get a lot of nice weather. So when it starts around May, they like to go out on weekend days to enjoy it and then relax with friends on the couch or at a bar at night watching the game.

      I guess Americans prefer spending the whole day on the couch?

      At any rate, if Montreal makes the conference finals, the game should be at night. CBC and RDS pay more money to the NHL than either NBC or Versus, and straight-up more people will be watching the game in Canada on those two channels than will on either of the American channels. Therefore, it should be the Canadian networks’ choice.

      Let NBC deal with the dilemma of a game starting on Sunday morning local time in San Jose.

      BTW, what’s on NBC on Sunday afternoon that they’d need to have the game finished by 5 eastern? Or is it just so there’s an OT cushion to avoid running into local news?

  12. kevin says:

    Like the weather is nice in Canada in May….or April or March or February? Please..the weather is nice in Canada in July and August. That’s it..in America people go out on Saturday nite. Is everyone in Canada broke or something? You’re telling me the ratings for this game would be higher on Sat nite than on Sun nite or any other nite

    • Josh says:

      I’m telling you that people in Canada go out and watch the game on Saturday night as a social activity.

      http://www.weatheroffice.gc.ca/city/pages/qc-147_metric_e.html

      There’s the forecast for Montreal. Admittedly, Saturday looks lousy, but Sunday’s pretty gorgeous.

      And here’s the forecast for the most northerly NHL city, Edmonton:

      http://www.weatheroffice.gc.ca/city/pages/ab-50_metric_e.html

      Just about perfect, the whole way through.

    • Chris S says:

      You’ve never been to Canada have you? I’m in Ontario and we have 20-30 degree celcius temperatures by April, and it lasts till September. I think you need to think before you continue to post hair-brained anti-Canadian posts like these.

      • Josh says:

        Hell, I’m in Whitehorse, and even though the predicted high for Saturday right now is only 11, people will still be out taking advantage of it. Weather is relative. In Miami, people would be bundling up with a high of 11. Here, it’s sandal weather.

    • canadiansportsfan says:

      Really? As I recall it was 30 degrees in Fredericton, NB back when the Habs played the Penguins on Sunday afternoon a couple weeks ago, same as the Saturday before it. Summer weather in Canada is from late April/early May until Labour Day.

      Yes the ratings would be highest on Saturday night. So far all of CBC’s highest ratings have come on Saturday nights in these playoffs. Only games on Saturday nights have made the 3 million mark. Just go look at the ratings that Steve has posted on here from Bill Houston and you’d see that.

      And no everyone in Canada isn’t broke, we just prefer to go out and do things on Saturday and Sunday afternoons and watch hockey on Saturday night. That is why things like Friday Night Football (CFL) and Hockey Night in Canada do so well, but anything in the afternoon doesn’t.

  13. stevelepore says:

    Guys, there are 3 hours of TAPED events on NBC Sunday aside from hockey. The NHL game can be moved to 3PM. Enough of the 11am start in SJ talk, please?

    • nosferatu says:

      To me it just seems that NBC/the league were being really presumptuous about the way things would unfold in the playoffs just to schedule a 2 ET start time this Sunday–especially considering San Jose was the No. 1 seed, Vancouver the No. 3 seed. Just schedule it for 3, and it won’t matter since all you have is that taped programming anyway.

  14. Jeremy says:

    Yes, Kevin, that’s exactly what we’re telling you – Saturday night hockey is a tradition in Canada.

  15. Robert says:

    RDS just showed at the end of the Habs winning the series over Pittsburgh that game 1 of Montreal vs. Boston or Philly will be FRIDAY IF the Bruins win or SUNDAY if the Flyers hang on to force a game 7.

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