A Busy Week Ahead for NBC and VERSUS

NEW YORK – March 10, 2011 – The NBC Sports Group presents four NHL games in four days starting this Sunday, including two appearances each by two of the NHL’s hottest teams, the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks and the surging Washington Capitals. The Capitals, winners of six straight and eight of their last 10 games, host the Blackhawks, who have also won eight of their last 10, at Verizon Center in Washington D.C. this Sunday at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports’ “NHL Game of the Week.” NBCSports.com will also stream the game live.


The schedule continues with games on VERSUS Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in primetime, including the Blackhawks hosting the San Jose Sharks on Monday and the Capitals visiting Detroit to take on the Red Wings on Wednesday. On Tuesday, the Sabres and Hurricanes meet with both fighting for a spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs.


Sunday’s game will be the only meeting between the two teams this season. In their only game last year, the Capitals erased a 3-0 deficit by scoring three third-period goals in the span of two minutes and 16 seconds, eventually winning on an overtime goal from Nicklas Backstrom.




Sunday Chicago @ Washington 12:30 p.m. NBC


Monday San Jose @ Chicago 8 p.m. VERSUS


Tuesday Carolina @ Buffalo 7:30 p.m. VERSUS


Wednesday Washington @ Detroit 7:30 p.m. VERSUS


Mike “Doc” Emrick (play-by-play), Eddie Olczyk (analyst) and Pierre McGuire (inside-the-glass analyst) call the action on NBC. Liam McHugh will host NBC Sports’ studio show with analysts Mike Milbury and McGuire on site at Verizon Center.


EMRICK ON “NHL GAME OF THE WEEK”: “We’re going to see two teams that have fashioned really good stretches lately, which will make for a really interesting showdown on Sunday.”


EMRICK ON BLACKHAWKS: “The Blackhawks are one of the hottest teams in the league. The impressive thing about Chicago is that five of their top six scorers returned to the team from last year and they have had tremendous success with them, including: Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharp, Jonathan Towes.”


EMRICK ON CAPITALS: “Washington has put together a tremendous string and has made their way back into it. They are back to where they once were earlier in the season.”

NBCSPORTS.COM: NBCSports.com will stream live all “NHL Game of the Week” broadcasts this season, including Blackhawks-Capitals. 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


NBC SPORTS GROUP’S NHL VIEWERSHIP SURGES: NHL games on NBC are averaging 1.9 million viewers, the most ever through this point of the season in the six-year history of the NHL on NBC.


After 44 exclusive telecasts this season, average viewership for the NHL on VERSUS is up 13 percent compared to last year (322,000 vs. 286,000).

Since the formation of the NBC Sports Group at the end of January, exclusive NHL telecasts on VERSUS have averaged 380,000 viewers, up 26 percent from before the Comcast-NBCU transaction was completed.

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.



About Steve Lepore
Contact me at stevemlepore@gmail.com

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