NHL COO: VERSUS/NBC To Start Re-negotiations in Late Fall, Two Outdoor Games For 10-11

Mike Reynolds of Multichannel gets a bundle of info from NHL COO John Collins, who sounds like an awesome interview (hint hint):

The current TV partners will get first crack at new deals.

“We hope to sit down with them in late fall. We’re eager to see what they come up with,” said Collins. Versus and NBC will be part of the same corporate team if the Comcast-NBC Universal joint venture proposal passes regulatory muster.
Meanwhile, ESPN officials have indicated the sports programming giant is interested in returning to the ice. Is there room for two TV lines? “It’s too early to speak to that,” said Collins, who noted that ESPN America’s contract for league telecasts in Europe is co-terminus with the deals of the U.S. national partners.
Asked if there could be a move toward airing more or all of the games in the first two rounds of the playoffs exclusively on a national basis, Collins replied: “We’re always talking with our partners about ways to improve our schedule.”

Speaking of the latter, Collins said there will be a pair of outdoor games next season, including one in Canada.

He would not specify locations or whether Versus would televise the second game. “We’re in discussions with each network,” he said, noting that the NHL’s schedule, including “Face-Off” contests would be unveiled sometime after the Stanley Cup Finals conclude and before the league’s draft on June 25-26 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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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

4 Responses to NHL COO: VERSUS/NBC To Start Re-negotiations in Late Fall, Two Outdoor Games For 10-11

  1. Jeremy says:

    The NHL’s schedule would be unveiled sometime before the league’s draft on June 25-26? That would be quite the departure from past years when the schedule came out in mid-July.

  2. Ian Kidd says:

    Collins never talks about any of the content coming out of NHL Network, just the distribution numbers. That’s no surprise — the on-air product is embarrassing.

  3. leafsfan1967 says:

    Ian Kidd :Collins never talks about any of the content coming out of NHL Network, just the distribution numbers. That’s no surprise — the on-air product is embarrassing.

    To call it embarrassing is an overstatement. Bringing HNIC to a US audience on Saturday nights has been a great idea. I just wish they would show the late game as well. I do wish they would show a lot more vintage games. The vaults are full of them so why not use them?

  4. sharksfansd says:

    Agree with all your comments above. Speaking of TV deals, has anyone heard a backup plan if the Habs/Flyers go into OT Tuesday night? Since there is no Versus 2 will they send ‘Hawks/Sharks to Versus.com? There will no excuses for having no availability of the game.

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