Your Mid-Day YouTube Compulsory: That Thing We Told You We’d Do

If the Playoffs Started Today: Yep, It’d Be Pittsburgh and Detroit on NBC

The NHL has been posting “If the playoffs started today…”-type news up on the main page for the past couple days, a practice that limits those tired of taking the time to just click on the “Standings” icon.  Anyway, we thought we’d take an early look on what series the networks would be showing.  First of all, here’s what the series would be:

East
#8 Florida vs. #1 Boston
#7 Carolina vs. #2 New Jersey
#6 Pittsburgh vs. #3 Washington
#5 Montreal vs. #4 Philadelphia

West
#8 Nashville vs. #1 San Jose
#7 Edmonton vs. #2 Detroit
#6 Columbus vs. #3 Calgary
#5 Vancouver vs. #4 Chicago

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An NBC Press Release That Won’t Get Us in Trouble (We Hope)

NOTE: The YouTube compulsory will feature NBC’s promo.

NEW YORK – March 11, 2009 – The New York Rangers battling for a playoff berth in the tight Eastern Conference, host their fierce rival the Philadelphia Flyers in the NHL Game of the Week, Sunday, 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC, presented in high definition. Mike “Doc” Emrick (play-by-play), Eddie Olczyk (analyst) and Pierre McGuire (inside-the-glass reporter) call the action. McGuire will pull double duty, hosting NBC’s studio show alongside analyst Mike Milbury on site at Madison Square Garden. 

MCGUIRE ON THE RANGERS UNDER JOHN TORTORELLA: “Under Torts the Rangers have improved on the forecheck and also on the power play. He has made them more aggressive in all facets of the game.” 

MCGUIRE ON THE FLYERS: “Philadelphia has great leadership with Mike Richards and Simon Gagne, a quick strike offense led by Jeff Carter and a brilliant young player in Claude Giroux. The only question mark is in goal. If they sort that out they will be very tough in the playoffs.” 

MCGUIRE ON SEAN AVERY: “If there’s one science experiment that better work for the New York Rangers, it’s Sean Avery. John Tortorella is the perfect tonic for Sean Avery. If he’s going to salvage his career, it’s going to be because of John Tortorella.” 

MILBURY ON RANGERS NEW ADDITIONS: “It’s amazing what a shift in attitude can bring. John Tortorella becomes the coach, Sean Avery’s added to the mix and bang you have chemistry.” 

INTRASTATE RIVALS FLYERS-PENGUINS FLEXED INTO MARCH 22 “GAME OF THE WEEK”: The Sunday, March 22 contest between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins has been selected for the “NHL Game of the Week” on NBC. Puck drop at Mellon Arena is at 12:30 p.m. ET. 

NBCSPORTS.COM & NHL.COM PRESENT “STAR-CAM”: NBCSports.com and NHL.com will offer a “Star-cam” in conjunction with NBC broadcasts, which will follow one player on each team throughout each of his shifts. Following the game, NBCSports.com will present a post-game show with game highlights and highlights from “Star-cam” and “Net-cam,” along with analysis from McGuire and Milbury. 

FLEX SCHEDULING & CONSISTENT 12:30 PM ET START TIME: For the first time, “Game of the Week” broadcasts have a consistent start time – 12:30 p.m. ET on Sundays (except for April 12, 2 p.m. start time). For the second straight season, the NHL and NBC will utilize flex scheduling and will be able to select from up to four games on Sunday afternoons. Thirteen days prior to the scheduled games (on Mondays), NBC, in conjunction with the NHL, will select one of those games as the “Game of the Week” to be broadcast during the NBC window. The other games will remain available to the teams’ regional carrier but will not be televised during NBC’s broadcast window. 

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