NBC/VERSUS to Air 8 Games in 8 Days To Finish the Season

NEW YORK – March 31, 2011 – The NBC Sports Group will conclude its 2010-11 NHL regular-season coverage (90 games) with eight games in eight days on both NBC and VERSUS, beginning this Sunday.


The Eastern Conference’s current No. 1 seed, the Philadelphia Flyers (102 points), host the No. 7 (tie) New York Rangers (87) at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia this Sunday at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC’s “NHL Game of the Week.” Both teams are fighting for playoff positioning with the Rangers currently in a precarious tie with Buffalo for the seventh playoff spot in the conference and the Flyers looking to hold on to home-ice advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs. NBCSports.com will also stream the game live.


Mike “Doc” Emrick (play-by-play), Eddie Olczyk (analyst) and Pierre McGuire (inside-the-glass analyst) will call the action on NBC. McGuire will pull double duty as he joins NBC Sports’ analyst Mike Milbury in the studio.


VERSUS will broadcast six games in five days beginning with a doubleheader on Monday (Bruins at Rangers; Kings at Sharks) featuring three teams jockeying for playoff positioning and the Rangers fighting for their postseason lives. The defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks, also fighting for their playoff lives as the current No. 8 seed in the Western Conference, and Red Wings, currently No. 2 in the West, conclude both the VERSUS and NBC regular seasons with a home-and-home series on Friday, April 8 and Sunday, April 10, respectively.





N.Y. Rangers @ Philadelphia 12:30 p.m. NBC



Boston @ N.Y. Rangers 7:30 p.m. VERSUS

Los Angeles @ San Jose 10 p.m. VERSUS



New Jersey @ Pittsburgh 7:30 p.m. VERSUS



St. Louis @ Chicago 8 p.m. VERSUS



Atlanta @ N.Y. Rangers 7 p.m. VERSUS


Friday (4/8)

Chicago @ Detroit 7:30 p.m. VERSUS


Sunday (4/10)

Detroit @ Chicago 12:30 p.m. NBC


NBCSPORTS.COM: NBCSports.com will stream live all “NHL Game of the Week” broadcasts this season. It will again offer “Star-cam,” which follows a marquee player in the game. Following the game, NBCSports.com will present bonus material, including “Star-cam” and “Net-cam” and bonus analysis from NBC Sports commentators. The NHL on NBC also has its own Facebook page. For NHL news and behind-the-scenes videos and photos, click here http://www.facebook.com/nhlonnbc


FLEX SCHEDULING & CONSISTENT 12:30 PM ET START TIME: Again this year, “Game of the Week” broadcasts will consistently start at 12:30 p.m. ET on Sundays.


For the fourth straight season, the NHL and NBC Sports will utilize flex scheduling and will be able to select from up to four games on Sunday afternoons. At least 13 days prior to the scheduled games, the NHL and NBC Sports will announce one of those games as the “Game of the Week” to be broadcast during the NBC Sports window. The other games will remain available to the teams’ regional carrier but will not be televised during NBC Sports’ broadcast window.



Tentative NBC Schedule For the Stanley Cup Final

Oh, hullo there!

Thanks to The Futon Critic for all the info. Here’s the NBC portion of the dates for the Stanley Cup Final:

Game 1 – Saturday, June 4th
Game 2 –
Sunday, June 5th
Games 3 & 4 –
Tuesday/Thursday June 7th/9th or Wednesday/Friday June 8th/10th on VERSUS
Game 5 –
Sunday, June 12th
Game 6 –
Wednesday, June 15th
Game 7 –
Friday, June 17th

Games 5-7 if necessary. All the games are scheduled to air at 8PM ET/5PM PT. On the east coast, NBC will lead into the Sunday games with Dateline NBC.

Your Announcers and Open Thread For Blackhawks-Bruins

Chicago vs. Boston, 7:30 PM ET, VERSUS (HD)
Play by Play:
Ken Daniels
Color: Andy Brickley
Inside the Glass: Brian Engblom

Your Announcers and Open Thread For Blackhawks-Red Wings

Chicago vs. Detroit, 7:30 PM ET, VERSUS (HD)
Play by Play:
Mike Emrick
Color: Eddie Olczyk
Inside the Glass: Pierre McGuire

Winners For Puck the Media’s Millionth Pageview Contest

Grand Prize: Eric, who guessed March 18th (on March 7, 2011 at 12:26 pm)

First Prize: Chris S, who guessed March 17th (on March 7, 2011 at 11:40 am)

Second Prize: Tom Flanagan, who guessed March 17th (on March 7, 2011 at 4:56 pm)

The contest winners were determined this way: Only Eric came up with March 18th, so he won without any random drawing. Everyone who guessed March 17th or March 19th was put into a random drawing and the Chris S. and Tom’s names came up. Congratulations to all.

To claim your prizes, please e-mail me at stevemlepore@gmail.com. If you do not claim your prize within a week (Wednesday, March 30th), another name will be drawn and you will not win the prize. Thanks to all who entered.

Your Announcers and Open Thread For Caps-Flyers

Washington vs. Philadelphia, 7:30 PM ET, VERSUS (HD)
Play by Play:
Ken Daniels
Color: Darren Eliot
Inside the Glass: Brian Engblom

Puck the Media Will Go On Semi-Hiatus, but For Good Reason

(NOTE: The contest winners for our Millionth Pageview Prizes will still be named tomorrow at 10:00 AM ET. Please join us for that to see if you’ve won NHL SWAG!)

This is very difficult for me to do, but it will be totally bittersweet. I must leave Puck the Media for now. Somewhat. Ratings stories and announcers/open threads will stay, but I feel that I can no longer comment on NHL TV issues regarding VERSUS/NBC without it being a conflict of interest.

If you haven’t heard already, I have been hired by VERSUS.com, at least through the end of the regular season, as an NHL writer/blogger for them. It is a dream come true, but it can’t be denied that it may give the appearance of favoritism to either network, and I wouldn’t want to do that. So, for now, the job is until the end of the regular season, and it may go past that. Until I am done with that, I will post ratings and announcers, and that is it for awhile, in addition to contest winners tomorrow.

I need to thank everyone who has ever read Puck the Media, whether it came through a link on another blog, on Twitter, or you knew my name from somewhere else and gave me a shot, I thank you immensely. This has been a true passion project for me for two and a half years, and it pains me to have to cut back on it beyond ratings and announcers. However, writing hockey is my dream, and I feel it would be unfair to myself if I didn’t give it 100%.

I want to thank all the writers, whether they be from blogs (Wyshynski, Sean Leahy, Ryan Lambert, Chris Botta, everyone at Pension Plan Puppets, Paulsen at Sports Media Watch, Wrap Around Curl, Jon Press, Kevin Schultz, Brian Metzer) or traditional media (Tom Gulitti, Ted Starkey, Adrian Dater), as well as folks at the NHL (Kerry McGovern, Schuyler Baehman, Nirva Milord), VERSUS (Leslie Byxbee, Meier Ravich, and in the past Katie Bradshaw) and NBC (Christopher McCloskey) for all their help in making this something special for me, and hopefully the readers.

Others I need to thank include all the NHL broadcasters who were so kind in giving their time, answers and advice. The complete list is in the interview section, but Mike Emrick, John Forslund, Joe Beninati, Jack Edwards (especially), Mike Lange, and Gord Miller must be thanked because they are living my dream, and took a few minutes of their time to help impart some of their wisdom on me. Also, thanks to Pierre McGuire, Brian Engblom, Liam McHugh, Steve Kouleas and many more for giving their time to me. It will not be forgotten.

So, this isn’t goodbye, but it is the end of an era of sorts here. Remember, ratings and announcer listings will stay, and I hope that’s something you’ll continue to check up on during the post-season if I’m still gone. For now, however, I want to thank everyone who ever read, commented, e-mailed, or chatted with me, as you made this a truly fulfilling experience. I consider myself remarkably blessed to have been able to do something that meant so much to me this early in my life. I can only hope the rest of the way matches up. Thank you for your support.

NBC Flat With Last Year, May Again Draw All-Time Network Low

NBC’s broadcast of Sunday’s controversial Rangers-Penguins game drew a season-low 0.7 overnight rating, according to Sports Business Daily (reg. required). This was even with last season’s comparable broadcast of Rangers-Bruins (3/21/10), which ended with a final rating of 0.5, tying the NHL record for lowest-rated game ever on broadcast television.

The NHL On NBC has averaged a 1.1 so far this season, down 9% from last year’s 1.2 at this point. The network returns with another Rangers-Flyers game on April 3rd at 12:30 PM ET.

NHL On NBC Overnights This Season
January 1 – Washington vs. Pittsburgh:
January 23 – Philadelphia vs. Chicago:
February 6 – Pittsburgh vs. Washington:
February 13 – Boston vs. Detroit:
February 20 – Regional Coverage*:
February 20 – Pittsburgh vs. Chicago*:
March 6 – Philadelphia vs. NY Rangers: 0.9
March 13 – Chicago vs. Washington: 0.9
March 20 – NY Rangers vs. Pittsburgh: 0.7
Season-to-Date Average: 1.1

NHL on NBC Overnights for 2009-10 Season

Jan. 1, Philadelphia vs. Boston*: 2.6
Jan. 17, Chicago vs. Detroit:
Jan. 24, Pittsburgh vs. Philadelphia:
Jan. 31, Detroit vs. Pittsburgh:
Feb. 7, Pittsburgh vs. Washington:
Mar. 7, Detroit vs. Chicago:
Mar. 14, Washington vs. Chicago:
Mar. 21, NY Rangers vs. Boston: 0.7
Season-to-Date-Average: 1.2

Your Announcers and Open Thread For Penguins-Red Wings

Pittsburgh vs. Detroit, 7:30 PM ET, VERSUS (HD)
Play by Play:
Mike Emrick
Color: Andy Brickley
Inside the Glass: Pierre McGuire

Coyotes-Blackhawks Draws Well For FS Arizona

From Brett Hansen of FS Arizona on Twitter:

Last night’s Coyotes/Blackhawks game = 2nd highest rated @phoenixcoyotes telecast of the year on @FOXSPORTSAZ (1.0 rating /18,026 HH)

Game peaked at a 1.5 rating, which represents approximately 27,039 Phoenix households. Game attendance at Jobing.com Arena was 17,328