More Shifts For Broad Street Bullies to Get Ready For the Final

With the Stanley Cup Finals between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Chicago Blackhawks set to begin this weekend in Chicago, HBO has added additional playdates for the hour-long documentary BROAD STREET BULLIES, a look at one of pro sport’s most polarizing teams, the legendary Philadelphia Flyers Stanley Cup championship squads of the 1970s. The increase in ice time for the BROAD STREET BULLIES on HBO includes Tuesday, May 25 (8:00 p.m.), Thursday May 27 (7:00 p.m.), Saturday, May 29 (11:00 a.m.) and Tuesday, June 1 (7:00 p.m.). All times are ET/PT.

HBO2 playdates: May 26 (1:10 a.m.), 29 (9:00 p.m.) and 30 (11:30 p.m.)

HBO On Demand® availability through June 7

This exclusive presentation tells the backstories of these engaging and colorful athletes, who won back-to-back Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975 with a bold, aggressive style that sparked controversy and criticism.

Playing before adoring fans at the Spectrum, the Philadelphia Flyers rose to prominence in the 1970s under the guidance of shrewd coach Freddie Shero. With larger-than-life figures like Dave “The Hammer” Schultz, Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Bernie Parent, Ed Van Impe, Bill Clement, Rick MacLeish, “Moose” Dupont, Bob Kelly, Joe Watson and Gary Dornhoefer, the team won many games, fought in just about all of them and made numerous enemies. The club’s popularity soared as their physically imposing and sometimes bloody style generated headlines across North America.

Although the franchise did not exist until 1967, the team rose to national prominence in just a few short years, and some NHL teams would see their home attendance double when the Flyers came to town. The club became a favorite of other hardscrabble cities and towns where blue-collar communities were taking an economic beating.

In a bizarre twist, singer Kate Smith’s rendition of “God Bless America” became the Flyers’ good luck charm. Eventually, the team that showcased players with gap-toothed grins, funny hair and goofy nicknames evolved into one of the NHL’s elite franchise. In 1976, the Flyers engaged the vaunted Soviet Central Red Army team in the finale of an exhibition series that would do little to ease the cold war tension between the two nations.

BROAD STREET BULLIES interviews include former Flyers standouts Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Bill Clement, Gary Dornhoefer, Bob Kelly, Bernie Parent, Ed Van Impe, Don Saleksi, Orest Kindrachuk, Bobby Taylor, Joe Watson and Dave “The Hammer” Schultz; team founder and chairman Ed Snider; former NHL stars Phil Esposito, Terry O’Reilly and Larry Robinson; radio personalities Howard Eskin and Anthony Gargano; former NHL director of broadcasting Stu Hackel; journalists Jay Greenberg, Frank Orr, Jack Chevalier and Mark Mulvoy; Flyers historian Bruce Cooper; and former director of NHL officiating Bryan Lewis.

The executive producers of BROAD STREET BULLIES are Ross Greenburg and Rick Bernstein; senior producer is Joe Lavine; produced by George Roy; Erik Kesten is the writer; Brian Keane scored the music; Liev Schreiber is the narrator.

Former Flyer Bill Clement: “Our legacy now is exactly what it was then…loved in one part of the world, and hated everywhere else. And there isn’t an apologetic bone in my body or anybody else’s body on our team.”

Melrose: “I’m the Most-Watched Hockey Person in the United States”

Well, I’m a lot better looking and better dressed than Don Cherry. Gotta get that out there right away. But I would say so, yeah. If you look at the viewership for ESPN, non-hockey fans are watching SportsCenter. All of a sudden, this guy from Canada pops up, and they say, ‘this is the hockey guy.’ So I would definitely say that’s true. It’s something I take pride in, and something I work hard to cultivate, and something that I try to convey every night to people that aren’t hockey fans. So I try and entertain a little more than guys that are on hockey networks, but I think definitely that’s true that I’m the most watched hockey person in the United States. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.

This and more from Paulsen’s fantastic interview with the World’s Most Interesting Analyst at Sports Media Watch.  Read it.

Conference Final Game 3’s Draw Mixed Results on VERSUS

After getting good news on the NBC side of things in the playoffs, a somewhat slower start has produced better numbers for the Conference Finals on VERSUS, though still not quite on par with 2009’s record-setting Conference Final on the network.

Game #3 of the Philadelphia/Montreal Eastern Conference Final series on Thursday drew a 1.1 rating, down 27% from last year’s comparable telecast (DET/CHI Game #3, 1.5 rating), but up 9% from Game #3 of last year’s Eastern Conference Final (PIT/CAR Game #3 drew a 1.0 rating on VERSUS).  The 1.1 likely draws even with the 1.2 million viewers the first two games of the series drew.

Game #3 of the San Jose/Chicago Western Conference Final series, an overtime thriller, drew a 1.4 rating, up 27% from last year’s comparable telecast (The aforementioned PIT/CAR Game #3, 1.0 rating) but down 9% from Game #3 of the 2009 Western Conference Final (Again, DET/CHI Game #3, also an OT thriller, 1.5 rating).  The 1.4 likely is slightly up from the 1.5 million viewers Game #2 drew to the network.

Through Friday, the Stanley Cup Playoffs are averaging an 0.9 household cable rating with 59 telecasts, an average of 832,962 viewers.  The playoffs are up 29% and 15% from the comparable up-to-date numbers in 2009 (0.7 rating, 721,445 viewers) through 55 telecasts.

VERSUS To Air Hockey Central After All Final Games

As announced on Hockey Central last night, once NBC signs off for the night at 11:00 PM, VERSUS’ NHL studio show will be on the air.  This is an absolute must, one that I’ve been clamoring for the network to do for years.  It’ll make the hockey viewing marketplace somewhat crowded, with NHL On the Fly airing at a similar time, but with On the Fly lasting on a cycle all night, VERSUS will be the place to be after every Final game.

Hughson’s Second Final Highlights CBC Stanley Cup Coverage

The 2010 Stanley Cup Final promises to be an intense battle between two storied franchises – one a reborn Original Six squad and the other a team that proudly embodies the blue collar physical play of the city it has called home since 1967. CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA continues a 57-year tradition, bringing Canadians exclusive, comprehensive coverage of the 2010 Stanley Cup Final between Chicago and Philadelphia in High-Definition.

The series begins on Saturday, May 29 at 7:30 p.m. ET, live from United Center with Hockey Tonight, hosted by Ron MacLean. At 8 p.m. ET the puck drops on Game One when the Western Conference Champion Blackhawks face off against the Eastern Conference winning Flyers. Winnipeg born, Jonathan Toews will be looking to lead the Hawks to their first Cup victory since 1961 – the longest drought in the NHL; while Philadelphia hopes to recapture the magic of the hallowed Flyers teams from the 1970’s and hoist Lord Stanley’s Cup for the third time in franchise history.

The best-of-seven final resumes in Chicago on Monday, May 31 at 8 p.m. ET, as veteran Flyers defenceman Chris Pronger, the pride of Dryden, Ont. will look to set the tone against fellow Canadian Olympian Duncan Keith and the Hawks. CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA then heads to Philadelphia on Wednesday, June 2 with Game Three at 8 p.m. ET, live from Wachovia Center (Please see below for the complete 2010 Stanley Cup Final broadcast schedule).

The legendary Don Cherry will return to his usual spot on Coach’s Corner alongside MacLean in the first intermission. Play-by-play announcer Jim Hughson with analysts Craig Simpson and Glenn Healy will call the game with rinkside reports from Elliotte Friedman and Scott Oake.

CBC’s exclusive Punjabi broadcasts continue in the Stanley Cup Final, live and on demand at CBCSports.ca. The Punjabi broadcasts will be available free to Bell TV subscribers on channel 249; selected games for Rogers Digital Cable subscribers in Ontario, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador on channel 385, to Shaw Digital Cable subscribers in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba on channel 333 and to Shaw Direct subscribers on channel 478. Viewers should contact their local service provider for more details. Parminder Singh, voice of CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA regular season Punjabi broadcasts will handle play-by-play duties while Harnarayan Singh, will provide analysis.

CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA continues to go live and interactive throughout the Playoffs on CBCSports.ca/stanleycup. In addition to each broadcast available online live and on-demand, each day at 1 p.m. ET throughout the 2010 Stanley Cup Final CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA Online with Scott Morrison, Jeff Marek and P.J Stock will keep fans in the game with the latest news, scores, stats, and highlights. Plus, throughout Final, CBCSports.ca/stanleycup will present an exclusive online post-game show following each broadcast, presenting highlights each night, exclusive interviews, and much more.

CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA: 2010 STANLEY CUP FINAL BROADCAST SCHEDULE

All games full network. Schedule subject to change.

CHICAGO (WESTERN CONFERENCE) VS. PHILADELPHIA (EASTERN CONFERENCE)

G1, Philadelphia @ Chicago, Sat, May 29 @ 7:30 p.m. ET starting with Hockey Tonight

G2, Philadelphia @ Chicago, Mon, May 31 @ 8 p.m. ET

G3, Chicago @ Philadelphia, Wed, June 2 @ 8 p.m. ET

G4, Chicago @ Philadelphia, Fri, June 4 @ 8 p.m. ET

G5**, Philadelphia @ Chicago, Sun, June 6 @ 7:30 p.m. ET starting with Hockey Tonight

G6**, Chicago @ Philadelphia, Wed, June 9 @ 8 p.m. ET

G7**, Philadelphia @ Chicago, Fri, June 11 @ 7:30 p.m. ET starting with Hockey Tonight

In Case You Haven’t Seen It Yet, Finals On Saturday!

NEW YORK (May 24, 2010) – The National Hockey League announced today the schedule for the 2010 Stanley Cup Final between the Western Conference champion Chicago Blackhawks and the Eastern Conference champion Philadelphia Flyers.

Based on their superior regular-season performance, the Blackhawks will host Games One and Two of the Stanley Cup Final, as well as Games Five and Seven, if necessary. Games Three and Four will be in Philadelphia, as well as game Six, if necessary.

NBC will telecast Games One and Two and, if necessary, Games Five through Seven of the best-of-seven series in the U.S., while VERSUS will broadcast Games Three and Four. In Canada, CBC and RDS will provide coverage for the entire series. All games also will be carried on Sirius XM Satellite Radio.

NHL Network, the League’s 24-hour, all-access pass to the most comprehensive hockey coverage, will feature special programming surrounding the Stanley Cup Final. NHL.com will continue to provide extensive digital coverage.

2010 Stanley Cup Final Schedule

Game Date Time (ET) Chicago vs. Philadelphia Networks

Game 1 Saturday, May 29 8:00 p.m. Philadelphia at Chicago NBC, CBC, RDS

Game 2 Monday, May 31 8:00 p.m. Philadelphia at Chicago NBC, CBC, RDS

Game 3 Wednesday, June 2 8:00 p.m. Chicago at Philadelphia VERSUS, CBC, RDS

Game 4 Friday, June 4 8:00 p.m. Chicago at Philadelphia VERSUS, CBC, RDS

*Game 5 Sunday, June 6 8:00 p.m. Philadelphia at Chicago NBC, CBC, RDS

*Game 6 Wednesday, June 9 8:00 p.m. Chicago at Philadelphia NBC, CBC, RDS

*Game 7 Friday, June 11 8:00 p.m. Philadelphia at Chicago NBC, CBC, RDS