NBC and VERSUS Ready For the Final, with Hockey Central After Every Game

NEW YORK (May 31, 2011)– The NBC Sports Group will surround the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final between the Western Conference Champion Vancouver Canucks and the Eastern Conference Champion Boston Bruins with primetime coverage of every game on NBC and VERSUS as well as pre- and postgame coverage nationally on VERSUS and locally in Boston on Comcast SportsNet New England. NBC will broadcast Games 1-2, and, if necessary, Games 5-7, while VERSUS will present exclusive coverage of Games 3-4 of the series.

To wrap up each night of coverage during the best-of-seven series on NBC and VERSUS, there will be a Hockey Central postgame show on VERSUS with the latest highlights, news, analysis and player interviews, live on-location from either the TD Garden in Boston or Rogers Arena in Vancouver. The shows will be hosted by either Bill Patrick or Liam McHugh with Keith Jones and Jeremy Roenick serving as analysts as well as Darren Pang working as the in-arena reporter. Additionally, before coverage of Games 3-4 on VERSUS there will be a Hockey Central pregame show 30 minutes prior to puck-drop with Bill Patrick as host alongside Keith Jones and Mike Milbury.

Emmy-award winner Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick (play-by-play) and Eddie Olczyk (analyst) will anchor NBC and VERSUS’ game coverage with analyst Pierre McGuire stationed “inside-the-glass.” NBC’s studio show will feature host Liam McHugh and analyst Mike Milbury for Games 1-2 and Dan Patrick with Mike Milbury for Games 5-7, if necessary.

For viewers in and around Boston, Comcast SporstNet New England’s nightly coverage of the Bruins-Canucks series will begin every evening at 6 p.m. ET with Chevrolet SportsNet Central. Anchors/reporters Mike Giardi and Kevin Walsh along with CSNNE.com Bruins insider Joe Haggerty will provide extensive nightly reports. The Boston Globe’s Kevin Paul Dupont, 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Bob Beers and NBC Sports Group hockey analysts are expected to contribute to Comcast SportsNet’s nightly and game-night coverage.

NBC SPORTS AND VERSUS EXECUTIVE PRODUCER SAM FLOOD ON THE STANLEY CUP FINAL: “We are really excited about this final and the NBC Sports Group working together between the two platforms to make this the biggest and best yet in the new world of the NHL. The combination of the game group and the studio group coming together on the road and sharing the platforms between VERSUS and NBC is very exciting. It’s allowed us to put everyone in the best position to be successful. It should be a great start tomorrow night in Vancouver.”

FLOOD ON THE NBC SPORTS GROUP COVERAGE PHILOSOPHY: “The NBC Sports Group philosophy is more about telling a story and showcasing the game. The technology takes care of itself. We’ll obviously have players with microphones, but we’re not going to get in the way of the game. We’re going to let the game be the star. Our job is to document that game and then make the viewing of that game more enjoyable for the fans.”

EDDIE OLCZYK ON THE STANLEY CUP FINAL: “You need stars and both these teams have them, but the interesting dynamic is that you need more than just top two line players. You need your role players that need to execute and I think this speaks to the success and why these teams made it here.”

OLCZYK ON BOSTON BRUINS ROAD TO THE FINAL: “They were able to beat Tampa Bay by out-defending them and found a way to play to their strengths.”

JEREMY ROENICK ON THE STANLEY CUP FINAL MATCHUP: “The two teams that are playing are very worthy of being here and have gotten here in different ways. I think Boston, with their true grit and their resiliency going to two Game 7’s, being down in a series and being able to battle back, and Vancouver maintaining a very consistent level of play, it couldn’t be a better fit for the National Hockey League having the two teams that are in the Stanley Cup Final.”

FLOOD ON GAME TALENT: “Doc Emrick, who won the Emmy as best play-by-play guy in all of sports, not just hockey; he won it over the NFL, NBA, MLB. Doc was recognized this year as the best – the gold standard — so it’s very exciting to have him as the captain of our team. Eddie Olczyk breaks the game down better than anyone in terms of showing why things are happening, and then Pierre McGuire being inside the glass for all seven games of the Final. He’s another huge advantage for us that he can have those unique insights from ice level.” NBC SPORTS GROUP STANLEY CUP FINAL SCHEDULE (all times ET)

Wednesday, June 1


Game 1: Boston at Vancouver, 8 p.m. ET – NBC


Saturday, June 4


Game 2: Boston at Vancouver, 8 p.m. ET – NBC


Monday, June 6


Game 3: Vancouver at Boston, 8 p.m. ET – VERSUS


Wednesday, June 8


Game 4: Vancouver at Boston, 8 p.m. ET – VERSUS


Friday, June 10


Game 5 (if necessary): Boston at Vancouver, 8 p.m. ET – NBC


Monday, June 13


Game 6 (if necessary): Vancouver at Boston, 8 p.m. ET – NBC


Wednesday, June 15


Game 7 (if necessary): Boston at Vancouver, 8 p.m. ET – NBC


DIGITAL: NBCSports.com and VERSUS.com have combined forces to create a single, robust destination for hockey fans during the NHL Stanley Cup Final. The NBC Sports Group consolidated NHL content from both the NBCSports.com and VERSUS.com’s hockey sections onto the rapidly-growing NBCSports.com site. One of the key content areas is ProHockeyTalk, one of NBCSports.com’s popular “Sports Talk” platforms that also include ProFootballTalk, CollegeFootballTalk, HardBallTalk, ProBasketballTalk and ProGolfTalk.

Some of the features on NBCSports.com during the Stanley Cup Final include:


Online-only videos featuring VERSUS and NBC Sports hockey commentators previewing upcoming games and wrapping-up all of the NHL action that day.

“Star-Cam,” which follows marquee players in NBC games, and “Net-Cam,” which provides a unique perspective from behind the goalie.

ProHockeyTalk, which recently had its most-trafficked month ever, will update the 2011 Stanley Cup Final news around the clock.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Fans can also keep up with the NHL Stanley Cup Final through a variety of NBC Sports and VERSUS social media platforms throughout the postseason. Content will include:


Behind the Scenes: Through the joint “NHL on NBC and VERSUS” Facebook page and @NHLonNBC_VS on Twitter, fans receive exclusive behind-the-scenes photos, interviews and video.

Commentator Tweets: Various NBC and VERSUS commentators will provide Twitter content throughout the Final, including occasional in-game Tweets.

Fan Questions: Fans will have the opportunity to ask questions to NBC and VERSUS commentators via Facebook and Twitter.

Team Tabs: Fans who “Like” the joint NBC and VERSUS Facebook page will have the opportunity to play a variety of games and upload fan photos based around each of their favorite teams who made the playoffs. As teams advance in the playoffs, new and more difficult games will challenge fans.

News: Fans can follow NBC and VERSUS Facebook and Twitter accounts to receive the most up to date scores, reports and stories from around the NHL and ProHockeyTalk.



Boston vs. Vancouver, The Ratings Battle: How Each Team Has Performed On National Television

Boston Bruins

Conference Quarterfinal vs. Montreal

Game 1, 4/14, VERSUS: 510,000 viewers
Game 2, 4/16, VERSUS: 661,000 viewers
Game 4, 4/21, VERSUS: 599,000 viewers
Game 5, 4/23, VERSUS: 841,000 viewers
Game 7, 4/27, VERSUS: 926,000 viewers

Conference Semifinal vs. Philadelphia

Game 1, 4/30, NBC: 1,921,000 viewers
Game 2, 5/2, VERSUS*: 1,699,000 viewers
Game 3, 5/4, VERSUS*: 1,234,000 viewers

Conference Final vs. Tampa Bay

Game 1, 5/14, VERSUS*: 1,541,000 viewers
Game 2, 5/17, VERSUS*: 1,562,000 viewers
Game 3, 5/19, VERSUS*: 1,405,000 viewers
Game 4, 5/21, NBC: N/A
Game 5, 5/23, VERSUS*: 1,516,000 viewers
Game 6, 5/25, VERSUS*: 1,681,000 viewers
Game 7, 5/27, VERSUS*: 2,550,000 viewers

Average: 1.33 million viewers over 14 telecasts

Vancouver Canucks

Conference Quarterfinal vs. Chicago

Game 1, 5/13, VERSUS: 540,000 viewers
Game 2, 5/15, VERSUS: 562,000 viewers
Game 3, 5/17, VERSUS: 689,000 viewers
Game 4, 5/19, VERSUS: 621,000 viewers
Game 5, 5/21, VERSUS: 590,000 viewers
Game 6, 5/24, VERSUS: 1,157,000 viewers
Game 7, 5/26, VERSUS: 1,135,000 viewers

Conference Semifinal vs. Nashville

Game 1, 4/28, VERSUS: 484,000 viewers
Game 2, 4/30, VERSUS: 582,000 viewers
Game 3, 5/3, VERSUS: 591,000 viewers
Game 4, 5/5, VERSUS: 702,000 viewers
Game 5, 5/7, VERSUS: 627,000 viewers
Game 6, 5/9, VERSUS: 679,000 viewers

Conference Final vs. Vancouver

Game 1, 5/15, VERSUS: 1,009,000 viewers
Game 2, 5/18, VERSUS: 847,000 viewers
Game 3, 5/20, VERSUS: 714,000 viewers
Game 4, 5/22, NBC: N/A
Game 5, 5/24, VERSUS: 872,000 viewers

Average: 729,000 viewers over 17 broadcasts

*-Denotes exclusive VERSUS telecasts in Boston. All NBC games were exclusive, no VERSUS telecasts aired in Vancouver.