NHL Faceoff Festival Two Weeks From Tonight in Winnipeg

NEW YORK (September 22, 2011) – The National Hockey League (NHL) will

celebrate the opening of the 2011-12 NHL season and its return to Winnipeg

with the 2011 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off™ season-opening hockey and

entertainment festival in Winnipeg, October 6. The NHL will transform “The

Forks,” Winnipeg’s iconic downtown gathering point, offering fans live

musical performances, interactive hockey attractions, a live broadcast of

the opening night game between the Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple

Leafs from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, and guest appearances from

George Stroumboulopoulos, host of CBC Television’s flagship late-night

program, George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight, and others. The NHL will

announce the exciting line-up of musical performers next week.


In addition, Winnipeg fans will be treated to a special live

introduction of the 2011-12 Winnipeg Jets™ team. CBC, VERSUS and NHL

Network™ will be on the scene in Winnipeg and will broadcast portions of

the festivities live to fans nationwide in Canada and in the U.S.,



Molson Canadian will serve as the title sponsor for 2011 NHL

Face-Off™, marking its first activation since signing a landmark multi-year

deal to secure exclusive League rights in the beer sponsorship category to

become the Official Beer of the NHL®.


“While all hockey fans around the world are excited for the new

season, fans in Winnipeg have waited 15 years to have the NHL back,” said

Brian Jennings, NHL Executive Vice President of Marketing. “The 2011 Molson

Canadian NHL Face-Off will be a true festival and celebration with a great

combination of hockey and entertainment for fans joining us in Winnipeg and

fans tuning in across North America.”


“The start of hockey season is a national holiday in Canada,” said

Dave Perkins, president and CEO, Molson Coors Canada. “We plan to help the

NHL throw the biggest ‘welcome home party’ hockey fans in Winnipeg have

ever seen while also ushering in a new season of NHL excitement like only

Canada’s beer of hockey can. Game on!”


“We are honoured the National Hockey League has chosen Winnipeg and

the Jets to host the season-opening event for the NHL year,” said Mark

Chipman, Chairman & Governor, True North Sports & Entertainment and the

Winnipeg Jets. “The entire province has been captivated by the return of

the NHL to Winnipeg and we are certain the excitement and support of this

festival will be just like everything else so far this summer –



“We couldn’t be more excited to launch a new NHL season with CBC’s

Hockey Night in Canada live from Winnipeg,” said Julie Bristow, Executive

Director, Studio and Unscripted Programming for CBC. “Like Hockey Night in

Canada itself, the start of a new season is a rite of passage for Canadians

and we look forward to connecting fans across the nation with our coverage

of the euphoria and celebration of the return of the NHL to Winnipeg.”


From 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. CT, NHL fans young and old will be able to take

part in the free festivities — including attractions that test hockey

skills; prizing and giveaways; food, beverage and merchandise tents; and

live musical performances and the live game broadcasts on giant screens.

For fans 18 years or older, the Molson Canadian Hockey House hospitality

spectator area will feature live game broadcasts, cold beer and other



Attractions and additional special guests will be announced in the

coming weeks. Fans should visit NHL.com/faceoff for the latest information.


The Forks will feature video boards to showcase CBC’s Hockey Night in

Canada broadcast of the Canadiens-Leafs from the Air Canada Centre in

Toronto. CBC’s pre-game show, Scotiabank Hockey Tonight, hosted by Ron

MacLean, will cover the opening of a new hockey season live on location

from Winnipeg, Toronto and Vancouver, airing nationally at 6:30 pm ET. In

Winnipeg, coverage will deliver live musical performances and the

introduction of the new Jets team to fans. The entire Hockey Night in

Canada team prepare fans for the new season with the latest news,

information and analysis from Toronto and Vancouver, while also bringing

viewers the Stanley Cup® banner raising in Boston. The one and only Don

Cherry returns for the new season with a much-anticipated edition of

Coach’s Corner, airing live from Toronto during the first intermission of

the Canadiens-Leafs game.


VERSUS will offer live look-ins to the festivities in Winnipeg from

its set in Boston and its Stamford, Conn. studio. VERSUS’ coverage of the

Bruins home opener against the Philadelphia Flyers at TD Garden will start

at 6:30 p.m. ET with its pre-game show, followed by live coverage of the

Bruins’ banner-raising ceremony at 7 p.m. ET and the game broadcast. In

addition, VERSUS will carry highlights from the Canadiens-Leafs game in



NHL Network’s coverage of Opening Night will commence at 3 p.m. ET

from its set in Boston and will be on the scene in Winnipeg and in

Vancouver for the Canucks-Pittsburgh Penguins game at Rogers Arena,

wrapping its coverage at 7 p.m. ET. NHL Network’s post-game show will

feature highlights from Opening Night, including the banner-raising in

Boston and the 2011 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off™ in Winnipeg.


NHL partners Scotiabank, XM, Canadian Tire, Frito Lay Canada,

Bridgestone, EA Sports and Reebok also will take part in the season-opening


Marc Crawford Joins TSN Starting Tonight

Toronto, ON (September 19, 2011) – TSN welcomes a new recruit to its roster with Stanley Cup-winning coach Marc Crawford joining the NHL ON TSN broadcast team as an analyst for the upcoming NHL season.


Crawford, a former NHL player and head coach, will be featured on the popular NHL ON TSN panel throughout the season. Crawford will primarily work with NHL on TSN host James Duthie, Hockey Insiders Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger along with former player Aaron Ward.


Crawford makes his debut on the NHL ON TSN panel on Wednesday, September 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET during TSN’s broadcast of the Boston @ Ottawa preseason game.


“Few people understand the nuances of hockey better than Marc Crawford. He possesses one of the brightest minds in the game,” said Mark Milliere, Senior Vice-President of Production, TSN. “Adding someone of Marc’s pedigree to the TSN panel is a huge win for hockey fans.”


“I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the TSN team. Every team I’ve worked for has had TSN playing in their dressing room on a daily basis,” said Crawford. “James Duthie, Bob McKenzie, Darren Dreger and Aaron Ward all have unbelievable contacts throughout hockey and I know I will learn a great deal about this side of the NHL from them – and maybe one day I can become as Zen like as the Quiz Master.”


A native of Belleville, ON, Crawford was the head coach for the Quebec Nordiques, Colorado Avalanche, Vancouver Canucks, Los Angeles Kings and Dallas Stars. Highlights of Crawford’s illustrious career include being awarded the Jack Adams Award for NHL Coach of the Year in 1995, winning a Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche in 1996, and coaching the Canadian men’s hockey team at the Nagano 1998 Olympic Winter Games. Crawford was also a two-time Memorial Cup winner (1980 and 1981) with the Cornwall Royals.



Crawford joins the NHL ON TSN team as TSN/TSN2 prepares to showcase more regular season games than ever before with its combined 151-game NHL broadcast schedule for the 2011-12 regular season.


In addition to his role with the NHL ON TSN, he will regularly contribute to SPORTSCENTRE, THAT’S HOCKEY and THAT’S HOCKEY 2NITE, and be a part of TSN’s extensive TRADECENTRE, NHL ENTRY DRAFT and FREE AGENT FRENZY coverage. Crawford will also be a regular contributor on Bell Media’s sports radio outlets, including TSN RADIO 1050, TEAM 1040 in Vancouver, Sports Radio 1290 in Winnipeg, TEAM 1200 in Ottawa and THE TEAM 990 in Montreal.


Versus Announces Preseason Schedule

Ken from the Fang’s Bites blog with a special guest appearance on the Versus NHL preseason schedule.

Altogether, Versus airs four games in the preseason starting tomorrow with the Toronto at Philadelphia game. To save costs, Versus will pick up the Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and Comcast SportsNet Chicago broadcasts for the four games it will air this preseason. I hope that’s not a trend for the upcoming season and playoffs as Versus did that as a way to cut corners last season.

So Versus airs four games produced by the Comcast family, however, it will produce its own studio show for the intermissions. This means fans won’t get to hear the teams of Mike Emrick, Ed Olcyzk and Pierre McGuire or Dave Strader and Brian Engblom until the regular season begins.

Here’s the schedule.

VERSUS NHL preseason schedule (all times ET and subject to change):

Wednesday, September 21 — Toronto at Philadelphia 7 p.m.
Intermissions: McHugh, Milbury, McGuire

Monday, September 26 — New York Rangers at Philadelphia 7 p.m.
Intermissions: McHugh, Jones, McGuire

Wednesday, September 28 — Detroit at Chicago 8:30 p.m.
Intermissions: McHugh, Jones, McGuire

Thursday, September 29 — New Jersey at Philadelphia 7 p.m.
Intermissions: McHugh, Milbury, McGuire

There you have it.

EXCLUSIVE: Bob Harwood Joins the Hurricanes

Former VERSUS reporter Bob Harwood will head south this season.

Harwood, who worked with The NHL on VERSUS from it’s beginning as The NHL on OLN in 2005, confirmed to Puck the Media last night that he will be joining the FS Carolinas broadcast crew for the Carolina Hurricanes. He will serve as host and in-game reporter alongside John Forslund (play-by-play) and Tripp Tracy (color) for the 67 broadcasts FS Carolinas is airing throughout the 2011-12 NHL season.

Harwood was let go by VERSUS after the NBC/Comcast merger, in which NBC’s hockey broadcasting philosophy was put to work on the VERSUS broadcasts, which left all of the network’s reporters without gigs in favor of inside the glass analysts. He continued to do occasional work for the network during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and was in the locker rooms for NHL Network during the Stanley Cup Final.

NHL Overtime Will Air Three Nights a Week in October, Five in January

VERSUS is tinkering around with the scheduling of it’s nightly hockey highlight show, NHL Overtime, cutting the four-nights-a-week show to three nights at the start of the season, but expanding to five nights a week by January.

Overtime, which NBC announced today will be hosted by Bill Patrick and Jeremy Roenick and feature a rotating cast of analysts, will air Monday-Wednesday every week from October thru December, at it’s normal time of 11 p.m. ET. This coincides with VERSUS expanding it’s game coverage to include a weekly Wednesday night game, meaning VERSUS will essentially air NHL Overtime almost exclusively on nights when it airs an NHL game beforehand.

When January rolls around, and VERSUS rebrands itself to become NBC Sports Network, the channel will be airing NHL Network Sunday through Wednesday, with an additional show on Fridays, all at 11 p.m. ET. While the Sunday night show also coincides with VERSUS adding a game that night, VERSUS will only air a Friday night game once this season.


NBC/VERSUS Release 2011-12 Talent Lineups

NBC Talent Teams

NBC/Wednesdays on VERSUS: Mike Emrick, Eddie Olczyk and Pierre McGuire

Mondays on VERSUS: Mike Emrick and Pierre McGuire

Tuesdays on VERSUS: Dave Strader and Brian Engblom

NHL Live Studio Show: Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury and Keith Jones*

NHL Overtime: Bill Patrick and Jeremy Roenick*

NBC Studio Show: Liam McHugh and Mike Milbury

Here’s the full press release:

NEW YORK (September 19, 2011) — The critically-acclaimed team of Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick (play-by-play), Eddie Olczyk (analyst) and Pierre McGuire (‘Inside the Glass’ analyst) will return to the NBC Sports Group as its featured broadcast team for the 2011-12 NHL season. Emrick, who won the Sports Emmy Award earlier this year in the play-by-play category, Olczyk and McGuire will again cover the ‘NHL Game of the Week’ broadcasts on NBC and will add VERSUS’ new exclusive Wednesday night telecast to their schedule.


Veteran NHL announcer Dave Strader (play-by-play) and former NHL player Brian Engblom (‘Inside the Glass’ analyst) also return and will primarily handle Tuesday and Sunday night telecasts as a team. Emrick, McGuire and Strader will call games exclusively for the NBC Sports Group this season.


In the studio, host Liam McHugh and analysts Mike Milbury and Keith Jones begin their second season together on VERSUS’ pre- and post-game show, NHL Live. Also on VERSUS, the NHL Overtime team of host Bill Patrick and analyst Jeremy Roenick will often be joined by additional former NHL players or coaches. McHugh and Milbury will also work NBC’s pre- and post-game coverage as well as its intermission segments.


“The key ingredient to the success of our broadcasts has been the people and we’re thrilled that the best in the business are returning,” said Sam Flood, executive producer for NBC Sports and VERSUS. “This talent schedule benefits hockey fans because it allows us to produce consistent broadcasts across all platforms, which is more important than ever as fans will see more national regular-season and playoff telecasts than ever before.”

NHL Live an Live Hockey Return Tonight

NEW YORK (September 19, 2011) – The National Hockey League returns to the ice as the NHL Network-U.S. begins its live preseason game coverage tonight with provincial rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators, facing off at 7 p.m. ET. The contest is the first of 19 preseason games the NHL Network will telecast live leading into the NHL regular season, which begins on October 6.


The NHL Network-U.S. preseason schedule is highlighted by rivalry games featuring Chicago at Detroit and Edmonton at Calgary. There will be four doubleheader dates — including Tuesday night’s presentation of Philadelphia-Toronto and Calgary-Vancouver — and a tripleheader on Saturday, Sept. 24, beginning at 3 p.m. ET.


The 2010 Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks make four appearances, as do the 2009 champion Pittsburgh Penguins. The 2008 champion Detroit Red Wings will appear three times in the preseason. On Saturday, Oct. 1, the Edmonton Oilers visit the 2011 Western Conference champion Vancouver Canucks in a game that could offer NHL Network-U.S. viewers a first look at Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, the first overall pick in the 2011 NHL Draft.


NHL On the Fly will provide live intermission coverage with the latest news, notes and features from around the League.


NHL Live also makes its season debut tonight at its new time, weeknights from 5-7 p.m. ET, throughout the season (in the U.S. & Canada). Hosted by Bill Pidto, Deb Placey and E.J. Hradek, NHL Live brings hockey fans the latest news, notes and buzz from around the league. This season, NHL Live is broadcasting from a redesigned, state-of-the-art studio set inside the NHL Powered by Reebok store, located in the heart of New York City.


NHL Live keeps fans updated by sharing the most up-to-date headlines from hockey insiders stationed all around the hockey world. Every episode is loaded with special guests including the NHL’s biggest stars, giving fans an in-depth look at what happens on and off the ice. The studio show gives fans unprecedented interaction and encourages viewers to call, e-mail and tweet their questions.




Sept. 19 Ottawa Senators at Toronto Maple Leafs 7 p.m.

Sept. 20 Philadelphia Flyers at Toronto Maple Leafs 7 p.m.

Sept. 20 Calgary Flames at Vancouver Canucks 10 p.m.

Sept. 21 Detroit Red Wings at Pittsburgh Penguins 7 p.m.

Sept. 22 Chicago Blackhawks at Pittsburgh Penguins 7 p.m.

Sept. 23 Buffalo Sabres at Toronto Maple Leafs 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 Minnesota Wild at Pittsburgh Penguins 3 p.m.

Sept. 24 Toronto Maple Leafs at Buffalo Sabres 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 Anaheim Ducks at Vancouver Canucks 10 p.m.

Sept. 25 Chicago Blackhawks at Detroit Red Wings 5 p.m.

Sept. 25 San Jose Sharks at Vancouver Canucks 9 p.m.

Sept. 27 New York Islanders at Calgary Flames 9 p.m.

Sept. 28 Vancouver Canucks at Anaheim Ducks 10 p.m.

Sept. 29 Tampa Bay Lightning at Montreal Canadiens 7 p.m.

Sept. 29 Vancouver Canucks at San Jose Sharks 10:30 p.m.

Sept. 30 Pittsburgh Penguins at Chicago Blackhawks 8:30 p.m.

Oct. 1 Detroit Red Wings at Toronto Maple Leafs 7 p.m.

Oct. 1 Edmonton Oilers at Vancouver Canucks 10:30 p.m.

Oct. 2 Chicago Blackhawks at Washington Capitals 5 p.m.

Emrick/Olczyk/McGuire, Strader/Engblom to Make Up Main VERSUS Broadcast Teams (UPDATED)

Michael Hiestand of USA Today reports:

Versus will announce today, spokesman Meier Raivich says, that its NHL coverage will have regular announcer pairings and game assignments this season. Those assignments for Versus, which will be renamed the NBC Sports Network in January: Dave Strader and Brian Engblom call games on Sundays and Tuesdays; Mike Emrick and Pierre McGuire on Mondays; and Emrick, McGuire and Eddie Olczyk, NBC’s announcing trio, on Wednesdays.

Your 2011 NHL Pre-Season TV Super-schedule

19 games will air on national television in the United States, with 10 airing in Canada during the 2011 National Hockey League pre-season.

NHL Network in the US will air 15 total games, including a couple of doubleheaders, and a triple-header on Saturday, September 24th. They will air every Hockey Night in Canada broadcast as well.

CBC and TSN will each air five games this pre-season, featuring all seven Canadian teams.

Live games only. All times ET. Surprised there’s fewer games in Canada? Well, you can spend that extra time at a Canadian pharmacy online to improve your health. Enjoy the schedule.

United States

Sept. 19
7:00 p.m. Ottawa vs. Toronto (NHL Network)

Sept. 20
7:00 p.m. Philadelphia vs. Toronto (NHL Network)

Sept. 21
7:00 p.m. Toronto vs. Philadelphia (VERSUS)
7:00 p.m. Detroit vs. Pittsburgh (NHL Network)

Sept. 22
Chicago vs. Pittsburgh (NHL Network)

Sept. 23
Buffalo vs. Toronto (NHL Network)

Sept. 24
Minnesota vs. Pittsburgh (NHL Network)
Toronto vs. Buffalo (NHL Network)
10:00 Anaheim vs. Vancouver (NHL Network)

Sept. 25
Chicago vs. Detroit (NHL Network)
9:00 San Jose vs. Vancouver (NHL Network)

Sept. 26
NY Rangers vs. Philadelphia (VERSUS)

Sept. 27
NY Islanders vs. Calgary (NHL Network)

Sept. 28
Detroit vs. Chicago (VERSUS)
Vancouver vs. Anaheim (NHL Network)

Sept. 29
New Jersey vs. Philadelphia (VERSUS)
Tampa Bay vs. Montreal (NHL Network)
10:30 Vancouver vs. San Jose (NHL Network)

Sept. 30
8:30 Pittsburgh vs. Chicago (NHL Network)

Oct. 1
Detroit vs. Toronto (NHL Network)
10:00 Edmonton vs. Vancouver (NHL Network)

Oct. 2
Chicago vs. Washington (NHL Network)


Sept. 21
Boston vs. Ottawa (TSN)

Sept. 22
Vancouver vs. Edmonton (TSN)

Sept. 24
Toronto vs. Buffalo (CBC)
Anaheim vs. Vancouver (CBC)

Sept. 26
Winnipeg vs. Ottawa (CBC)

Sept. 27
NY Islanders vs. Calgary (TSN)

Sept. 28
Carolina vs. Winnipeg (TSN)

Sept. 29
Tampa Bay vs. Montreal (TSN)

Oct. 1
Detroit vs. Toronto (CBC)
Edmonton vs. Vancouver (CBC)

NHL Network’s Full Pre-Season Schedule

A lot of these deal with blackout restrictions and tape delayed games. I’ll try and find out what is scheduled to be live and primary and edit when I do. Courtesy of NHL.com

Sept. 19
7:00 p.m. Ottawa vs. Toronto

Sept. 20
7:00 p.m. Philadelphia vs. Toronto

Sept. 21
7:00 p.m. Detroit vs. Pittsburgh

Sept. 22
Chicago vs. Pittsburgh

Sept. 23
Buffalo vs. Toronto

Sept. 24
Minnesota vs. Pittsburgh
Toronto vs. Buffalo
10:00 Anaheim vs. Vancouver

Sept. 25
Chicago vs. Detroit
9:00 San Jose vs. Vancouver

Sept. 26
NY Rangers vs. Philadelphia

Sept. 27
NY Islanders vs. Calgary

Sept. 28
10:00 Vancouver vs. Anaheim

Sept. 29
Tampa Bay vs. Montreal
10:30 Vancouver vs. San Jose

Sept. 30
8:30 Pittsburgh vs. Chicago

Oct. 1
Detroit vs. Toronto
10:00 Edmonton vs. Vancouver

Oct. 2
Chicago vs. Washington