Archive for the ‘CBC Sports’ Category
Sportsnet officially announced their new broadcast contract with the National Hockey League this morning. And the scope of the new deal is much wider than I could have imagined when news of it first broke 12 hours ago. Sportsnet has bought rights to all nationally-broadcast NHL games for 12 seasons beginning next fall. Sportsnet also picks up rights to the NHL All Star Game and Entry Draft. Rogers will also take over operation of NHL Centre Ice and GameCentre Live in Canada. Rogers is paying $5.2 billion for rights to every game for 12 seasons. The NHL will receive approximately $300 million next season, with fees raising to $500 million by the end of the contract.
Coverage on Saturdays and Sundays will begin at 4pm Eastern. Sportsnet has exclusive national coverage on Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays. Sportsnet will also launch a new studio that will host all NHL on Sportsnet and Hockey Night in Canada broadcasts. As part of the deal Rogers will sub-license some Saturday night coverage to the CBC. Two games every Saturday will air on CBC, with the rest airing on Citytv and Sportsnet. This eliminates the need for regional broadcasting. Sportsnet will assume complete creative control over all Hockey Night in Canada broadcasts. This means the future for CBC’s hockey talent is uncertain. It also means that Sportsnet will have the pick of all on-air personalities at TSN and CBC for their new broadcasts. Games will air on CBC, Sportsnet, SN1, SN360, TVA, TVA Sports, TVA Sports 2, as well as other potential channels on Saturday nights.
Keith Pelley, who was key in the plans for how Sportsnet will cover the NHL, was also the head of the Olympic Broadcast Consortium’s Vancouver 2010 coverage. Sportsnet will aim to offer Hockey Night in Canada in a similar fashion with all networks pooling resources and cross-promoting. Pelley set a new standard for Olympic broadcasting in Canada and is looking to do the same for hockey. Since the Sportsnet deal with CBC only came together in the past few days the broadcasters haven’t decided which CBC on-air personalities will transfer over to Sportsnet.
Sportsnet will get to show 30 Leafs games nationally (some could air on CBC) as part of the new agreement. Sportsnet will retain 26 for regional consumption beginning in 2016, with the other 26 airing on TSN regionally. Since TSN has regional rights to 60 Jets games, the Jets will appear on Sportsnet a maximum of 22 times. It is unclear how many games for each of Canada’s other five teams will air on Sportsnet. TVA will pick up rights to 22 Montreal Canadiens games, most of which will air on their over-the-air channel on Saturday nights.
The sub-licensing deal with the CBC is one of the most intriguing aspects of the deal. The CBC will have around 320 hours of primetime hockey. That probably equates to around 50 regular season games and 50 playoff games. There is no word yet on how CBC and Sportsnet will split-up the playoffs, except that the Stanley Cup Final will air on CBC. The sub-license will last for four years; however, in a news conference Rogers Media President Keith Pelley said that he hopes the deal with CBC can extend beyond four years. The CBC and Sportsnet will also work together to acquire and broadcast other major sports properties. Sub-licensing deals are already in place for the two networks to split the Grand Slam of Curling and 2014 FIFA World Cup.
In a letter to CBC employees President Hubert Lacroix outlined what the four-year deal means for the public broadcaster. CBC will no longer assume any control over production or content, although Sportsnet will consult with them. CBC also will not make any advertising revenue from the broadcasts; however, they also are not paying Rogers or the NHL a cent to show the games. Lacroix also notes that the loss of advertising revenue will mean job losses at the CBC. These additional cuts come on the heels of CBC Sports cutting costs just two years ago due to a lack of funding.
This is a very complex deal and there are many questions that still need asked and answered. It is a complete game-changer in Canadian sports broadcasting and will result in many changes at CBC and TSN. I’ll leave the speculation, and there is lots of it, for a later date (and the comments section). I do plan to look into the effects this deal will have on all networks, but especially the CBC, in the coming weeks.
Sportsnet has confirmed the deal this morning. Rogers will own the rights to every NHL broadcast in Canada, paying $5.2 billion for the next 12 years. Rogers will sub-licence games to CBC for Hockey Night in Canada, playoffs and the Stanley Cup. CBC will no longer be the only network showing hockey on a Saturday night with City now in the mix (see graphic on right). Rogers has the exclusive window to broadcast any Canadian team on a Wednesday, Saturday or Sunday. TVA Sports will have French-language coverage.
“Hockey No Longer Lives Here” will presumably be TSN’s new tagline next fall. That after TSN lost NHL TV rights to CBC and Sportsnet. The news first surfaced when Bob McKenzie tweeted that two networks had acquired the new NHL national television contract that takes effect next season. That tweet, from hockey’s best insider, flew in the face of everything that everyone has reported in the past week. As recently as this morning, publications had reported that the NHL would sell smaller packages to CBC, TSN and Sportsnet to maximize exposure and revenue.
Well, it turns out that somehow TSN has missed out as McKenzie has now confirmed that CBC and Sportsnet have picked up NHL rights for 12 seasons beginning next fall. While more information will probably become available in the morning in terms of which network will broadcast which games. According to reports CBC will keep most of what they have now. Sportsnet will replace TSN as the national cable broadcaster, with Sunday night the likely landing spot for an exclusive weekly broadcast. Sportsnet will also likely have one exclusive conference final.
Steve Ladurantaye of The Globe reported Monday that CBC will like pay around $200 million per year. The Globe article also stated that the CBC could lose $175 million in advertising revenue without the NHL. So, it is clear that even at a $200 million pricetag the CBC would have been out almost as much money without broadcasting the NHL as it is paying the hefty fee the NHL is requesting to show games.
In another report earlier Monday, Chris Botta of Sports Business Daily reported that all three networks would get a slice of the NHL pie. In the piece Botta reported that TSN was likely to retain Wednesday Night Hockey and add the All Star Game. With the recent developments it is unclear whether Sportsnet will offer national broadcasts on Wednesday night or whether CBC or Sportsnet will show the All Star Game. Botta projected that Sportsnet and TSN’s deals would be worth over $125 million combined, which means Sportsnet likely paid upwards of $150 million for exclusivity.
In losing TSN, the NHL has lost a partner that revolutionized broadcasting of the league. Day-long trade deadline and free agent coverage were TSN innovations. As was TV coverage of the NHL draft and even the All Star Game fantasy draft. The NHL also loses TSN’s in-game coverage, which featured award-winning broadcasters like Chris Cuthbert, James Duthie and Bob McKenzie.
However, the bigger loss is undoubtedly for TSN. It’s not the end for TSN, as some were quick to project. They still have CFL and curling locked up in long-term contracts (which, yes, a lot of people do watch). TSN also has the World Juniors locked up for a decade in a new contract that kicks in this December. The NHL can live without TSN because the network will still bid aggressively in 12 years. That’s in comparison to CBC, who probably would be out of broadcasting hockey for good if they had lost NHL rights for over a decade.
So, to recap. TSN has the CFL through 2018, Season of Champions curling through 2020 and World Juniors through 2023. Those are the most valuable sports properties in Canada outside of the Olympics, NHL and NFL. The Canadian Hockey League will also sign a new contract in the coming year, which TSN is probably now very interested in.
TSN will have to worry about an exodus of its esteemed hockey talent following this season. Is there room for both Chris Cuthbert and Gord Miller at a network with no weekly national hockey broadcasts? I doubt it. Miller has worked at TSN since 1990 and called World Junior games since 2002; however, Cuthbert is TSN’s most valuable voice since he also calls the Grey Cup. I wonder if Miller and Ray Ferraro are a natural choice for Sportsnet’s primary broadcast crew. Another question is where will James Duthie go? Surely not back to SportsCentre. While he’d make sense at the helm of TSN’s CFL coverage that would come at the expense of long time TSN employee Dave Randorf. Maybe he’ll follow the example of fellow highly-touted TSN employees Dan O’Toole and Jay Onrait and look south of the 49th.
Remember the night of November 25th, 2013 everyone. It is a landmark in Canadian sports broadcasting that could lead to Sportsnet becoming the top-rated sports network in Canada. Of course this landmark is really just the latest occurrence in a trend that began in 2010 when Scott Moore left CBC and Keith Pelley left CTV to lead Rogers’ broadcasting division.
Burgundy to TSN… While TSN has lost hockey, they have gained Ron Burgundy. That’s right, the fake news anchor from the movie Anchorman. Burgundy, played by Will Ferrell, will join Vic Rauter in the broadcast booth for TSN’s coverage of the first draw of the Olympic Curling Trials on Sunday afternoon. Now, I love Anchorman as much as anybody, but this is a ridiculous ploy for attention. It only promotes the idea that curling needs a gimmick to draw in viewers, which isn’t true in my opinion. Not only is TSN trying this gimmick, but they are doing it at the biggest Canadian curling event on the calendar. But then again, it’s a gimmick that will work because even I will tune in to see what Ferrell knows about curling.
Grey Cup ratings… An average of 4.5 million Canadians tuned into TSN for the 101st Grey Cup from Regina Sunday evening. That makes it the fourth most watched Grey Cup ever on TSN, which is mildly impressive considering it was a blowout by halftime. A ratings peak in the second quarter exemplifies this. But isn’t so impressive when considered that it is the lowest rated Grey Cup on TSN since BBM introduced Portable People Metres to measure audiences in 2009. Ratings are down a million viewers compared to last season, despite a victory for the league’s most popular team. However, regular season CFL ratings were up 4.3% this year.
Wednesday night sees the start of the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Final, with the Chicago Blackhawks taking on the Boston Bruins, the first time in 34 years that two original six teams have faced each other in the finals. Below is a quick rundown of what to expect.
Game 1: Wednesday June 12, 8pm — Bruins @ Blackhawks — CBC / NBC
Game 2: Saturday June 15, 8pm — Bruins @ Blackhawks — CBC
Game 3: Monday June 17, 8pm — Blackhawks @ Bruins — CBC
Game 4: Wednesday June 19, 8pm — Blackhawks @ Bruins — CBC / NBC
Game 5*: Saturday June 22, 8pm — Bruins @ Blackhawks — CBC / NBC
Game 6*: Monday June 24, 8pm — Blackhawks @ Bruins — CBC / NBC
Game 7*: Wednesday June 26, 8pm — Bruins @ Blackhawks — CBC / NBC
Commentators: Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson in the booth, Glenn Healy inside the glass, Scott Oake reporting.
In-Studio, live on location: Ron MacLean, Don Cherry, P.J. Stock, Elliotte Friedman, Andi Petrillo.
Pre-Game: From 7:30pm each night, except game 2: from 7pm featuring the 2013 NHL Awards.
Post-Game: Live online at cbcsports.ca.
Commentators: Mike Emrick and Eddie Olczyk in the booth, Pierre McGuire inside the glass, Jeremy Roenick reporting.
In-Studio, live on location: Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury, Keith Jones.
Commentators: Pierre Houde and Marc Denis in the booth.
In-Studio: Alain Crete, Mario Tremblay and Benoit Brunet, with Denis Gauthier, Mathieu Darche, Pascal Vincent, Patrick Lalime, Jocelyn Lemieux and Guy Carbonneau alternating.
And I’m sure the endless amount of talking hockey heads on Sportsnet and TSN will be on location during the series.
It seems like a very real possibility that the Ottawa Senators could play the Montreal Canadiens in the first round of the 2013 NHL playoffs. All Ottawa has to do is beat Boston tonight. That would vault them up to 7th, and the Canadiens to 2nd. At first this seems like the elusive, dream all-Canadian matchup CBC is also looking for come April. But then again, maybe it’s not. TSN studio host James Duthie suggested he thinks CBC will select the Leafs’ and Canucks’ series on Sunday evening, regardless of if the Senators play the Canadiens or not. At first I was very skeptical, but after thinking about it and seeing how the Western Conference seedings, I’m beginning to agree with James.
The main goal for both the CBC and TSN is to attract ratings and advertising dollars. Ratings and length of series are both important. The Canucks are a proven playoff ratings earners for the CBC. The Senators, are not. The Canadiens will always result in part of their fanbase watching in French on RDS. Ottawa-Montreal averaged 870, 000 viewers on TSN in March. Also in March Vancouver-San Jose averaged 505, 000 viewers for a game only available in British Columbia on Sportsnet Pacific. While I can’t find any ratings from this year, the Canucks consistently averaged over 800, 000 viewers for games on TSN against US-based teams late last season (799, 000 vs. ANA; 824, 000 vs. LA; 856, 000 vs. DAL). Undoubtedly the Canucks can get the same type of ratings on their own that the Senators and Canadiens can muster together in English-Canada.
So, now that I’ve proven the ratings are close enough that CBC could reasonably take the Canucks over a Ottawa-Montreal series, that leads me to my second point. If CBC takes both TOR-BOS and OTT-MTL, that means they will probably end up with DET-ANA and LA-STL in the West. This is a scheduling nightmare. Of a possible 28 games, 21 take place in the Eastern or Central Timezones. Games in Detroit and St. Louis would have to air online for most of the country. CBC could only show 7 doubleheaders. Any of those that go head-to-head with the Canucks will get beaten. They might win the early timeslot every night, but they won’t post many wins at 10:00pm ET. And fans will be worse off if games in St. Louis and Detroit are only available on 1-2 regional stations in Ontario and online.
But, if CBC takes TOR-BOS and SJ-VAN, they could have an anchor for their doubleheader each night and avoid these problems. CBC would probably still take ANA-DET with the fourth pick and then either NYI-PIT or NYR-WSH later on. This would mean 17 games in the Eastern Time Zone and 11 in the Pacific Time Zone. And far less conflict, especially when Canadian teams are playing. CBC would win the late timeslot every night they have a game in it, even if going head-to-head with STL-LA on TSN. And they’d still win every early timeslot with the Leafs and probably have an afternoon game from their eastern-based US series, further reducing conflicts.
And, lastly, even going head-to-head with OTT-MTL on TSN, I think NYI-PIT or NYR-WSH will get better ratings than STL-LA. Easily. And I think CBC’s ratings as a whole would be higher. Of course criticism will come from CBC picking SJ-VAN over an all-Canadian series, but will that really matter? I think TSN had MTL-OTT around three times this season, so why not a few more? For those who have cable, it will probably mean more games on TV without needing CHEX or CBC Windsor.
Anyone ever wonder what Don Cherry thinks of female reporters in NHL dressing rooms? Well, now that he’s announced it in all his glory on Coach’s Corner tonight, everyone knows. And for him and the CBC, that’s probably not a good thing. It all started when Cherry felt the need to chime in on Duncan Keith’s slightly sexist remarks earlier in the week when a female reporter interviewed him. Cherry basically said Keith’s quote was a non-issue. Which I actually agree with a bit. I’ve heard the interview a few times and I’m not convinced he meant any harm.
This led to the point Cherry really wanted to make, which was, “…and I really believe this, I don’t believe women should be in the male dressing room.” The look on Ron MacLean’s face (top right) really says it all. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, Cherry followed it up with, “I don’t feel women are equal; I feel they are on a pedestal and they should not be walking in when naked guys are walking in.” Here is the entire video:
Cherry went to one of the oldest white male tricks in the book, that white men are in fact the ones discriminated against. And why wouldn’t he considering how well it’s worked for those who claim black people have better rights than white people? Surely this last line from Cherry is the one that really took it over the top.
As is usual with Cherry, it isn’t hard to find him expressing a similar opinion from 20 years ago. Back in the good ‘ole days when women weren’t allowed in locker rooms for fear they might look at penises and get excited, they were still causing problems at NHL hockey games. Yes I know, hard to believe, but women have caused problems at hockey games ever since they were first allowed in the arenas. Here is the old video (notice MacLean’s similar reaction at 0:23):
I think CBC should suspend him, but likely they will just ask him to apologize next time he is on-air Tuesday or Wednesday. And this certainly isn’t the first time Cherry has stirred up controversy around the start of the playoffs. See this post from April 18, 2011 when he laughed off the problem of concussions.
Remember this kind of thing is what got Richard Keys and Andy Gray fired at Sky Sports. And they didn’t knowingly say it on-air. Cherry did. Other than that I don’t know what to say. The videos really speak for themselves.
I expect that the NHL will release their 2013 Conference Quarterfinals schedule Sunday night at 11:00pm Eastern on a special that will air on NHL Network. That’s regardless of what happens tonight. However, with about 24 hours for schedules to leak before any is officially released, I’m sure some news will come out early.
In this post I’ll list the NHL Playoff Matchups as they are confirmed, what networks will cover them, and the night the series will start. I’ll also add full schedule information once it is available. Anything that is not confirmed, but worth mentioning (probably broadcasters and current, but not final standings) is in italics. I’m assuming every series will start Tuesday or Wednesday, but that’s not confirmed. Feel free to post any information you come across in the comments.
(1) Pittsburgh Penguins vs. (8) New York Islanders (Game 1, Wednesday)
(2) Montreal Canadiens vs. (7) Ottawa Senators (Game 1, Wednesday)
(3) Washington Capitals vs. (6) New York Rangers
(4) Boston Bruins vs. (5) Toronto Maple Leafs
(1) Chicago Blackhawks vs. (8) Minnesota Wild (Game 1, Tuesday at 8pm)
(2) Anaheim Ducks vs. (7) Detroit Red Wings (Game 1, Tuesday at 10:30pm)
(3) Vancouver Canucks vs. (6) San Jose Sharks
(4) St. Louis Blues vs. (5) Los Angeles Kings (Game 1, Tuesday)
*The Canadiens will likely play game 1 on Tuesday.
The 2014 Olympics begin in 365 days in Sochi, Russia. Today Sportsnet announced that they are the official cable broadcaster of the Games in Canada. This is just the latest partnership between the two networks which also includes the 2014 FIFA World Cup. I’ll have a lot more on this later, but for now here is a statement from Sportsnet.
Today marks the official one-year countdown to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia and Sportsnet is pleased to announce it has reached a sub-licensing deal with CBC to provide Canadians with comprehensive coverage of the Games.
Further platform distribution announcements are to come, but under the agreement Sportsnet is now an official cable broadcaster of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
As part of the sub-licensing deal, Sportsnet and Sportsnet ONE will carry approximately 200 hours of 2014 Olympic Winter Games coverage, including coverage in prime time
And as did TSN and RDS, evidently. Somehow I missed this. Worth noting that TSN and RDS have shown every Olympics since 1998. Very impressive.
TSN and RDS are partnering with CBC/Radio-Canada to provide coverage of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
Through the partnership, both networks will be able to bring viewers access to live events and coverage across TSN and RDS’s sports, news, and entertainment platforms.
TSN and RDS have been part of Canada’s Olympic tradition for the past three decades, setting the standard of excellence for delivering Olympic coverage during the Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 Games.
TSN and RDS will provide more details on this partnership and broadcast information in the near future.
And here is CBC’s press release with all that news and more. Read the bolded section closely. What’s coming next? Netflix for highlights?
Today marks the official one-year countdown to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, and CBC/Radio-Canada is thrilled to bring the Olympic Games home to Canadians. As Canada’s Official Broadcaster, CBC/Radio-Canada brings Canadians cross-platform coverage of the top news and stories in the year leading up to Sochi 2014, running from February 7 – 23, 2014. With exclusive license arrangements, TSN, RDS, and Sportsnet will also present coverage of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. Stay tuned – more platform distribution announcements to come.“We’re incredibly proud to be the official home of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games,” said Kirstine Stewart, Executive Vice-President, English Services, CBC. “As we count down to Sochi 2014, we are committed to sharing the inspirational stories of our athletes, while providing Canadians with a robust Olympic Games experience, across all platforms.”Louis Lalande, Executive Vice-President, Radio-Canada, added: “The Olympic Games have been part of Radio-Canada’s DNA for over fifty years. It is with great anticipation that we prepare for Sochi 2014. We aim to offer viewers from coast to coast a distinct coverage that will allow them to live and breathe with our athletes on this most prestigious stage.”Click here for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games English Promo.CBC/Radio-Canada is the place to be as we count down to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. With coverage across all platforms – including TV, radio, online, and mobile – Canadians can connect with the biggest stories and the latest content whenever and wherever they want it. Through world-class storytelling and the best performance coverage available, CBC/Radio-Canada will introduce viewers to Canadian athletes poised to take on the world in 2014. Canadians can engage with CBC/Radio-Canada leading up to and throughout the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games online in English at CBC.ca/Olympics and in French at Radio-Canada.ca/Olympiques, as well as on Twitter in English at @cbcolympics (#cbcolympics), and in French at @RC_Sports (#RColympiques).The countdown to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi was in full-swing this week on CBC, with extensive programming on all platforms. Throughout the week, viewers have enjoyed extensive coverage, with stories from Sochi and beyond, as well as a look at Canada’s Olympians as they prepare for the Games.
CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada began its 60th season on Saturday with record ratings. There were a number of changes to CBC’s broadcasts, especially to the studio programming and the “Prime West” game. While some of CBC’s changes were effective, others need tweaking. And still others made no sense whatsoever. And, of course, it wouldn’t be the first weekend of a new NHL season without Don Cherry analysis on the Brian Burke firing (remember when Burke tried to have Cherry fired?).
I’ll start with the good. I think Kevin Weekes and Glenn Healy are both far more effective in studio than they are on game broadcasts. Weekes is especially good as the slower pace of studio talk fits his delivery better. Healy’s better if only because I’d rather hear him for 10 minutes than 60+. In fact I actually thought he was kind of funny Saturday night, more like his pre-NHLPA self. I also think CBC giving Rick Ball the “Prime West” game was a great choice. He isn’t Cuthbert or Hughson, but he is far better than Lee and should grow into the spot fine. He is also a great candidate to lead CBC’s CFL coverage, should they ever get those broadcast rights again.
The only problem about Weekes and Healy in the studio is that Kelly Hrudey is also a better studio analyst. He really seemed out of his element doing colour commentary on Saturday night. He constantly stumbled over sentences and was just too slow to keep up with the pace of the game. Hrudey is at his best when he’s in the studio with a telestrator breaking down plays. This presents the obvious problem for CBC, they have too many goalies who all excel at the same thing.
So how do they fix that problem? Well most importantly there’s still plenty of time for Hrudey to adjust to his new role. If he doesn’t, I’d suggest moving him back to the studio with Weekes. CBC could also try putting Hrudey between the benches.If all else fails, then I’d love to see Daryl Reaugh back at CBC working the late game with Ball. Of course that would also depend on Reaugh’s commitment to do local Dallas Stars game on Fox Sports.
Luckily for Hrudey, it isn’t him everyone will remember Saturday HNIC season opener for. PJ Stock drew the ire of most of Twitter on Saturday night for his studio analysis. The “best” of Stock’s lines? “Take option ‘A’ or option ‘B’. [Toronto] didn’t beat Jack the Giant Killer in Montreal.” If you can figure that one out, then good on ya. And yes, I realize it’s a metaphor to the story, but it’s also a metaphor that makes little sense.
Stock also talked in circles during the Hotstove when he got confused about P.K. Subban’s contract negotiations. Or as Stock put it, “With him in the lineup they finished 15th, without him they can’t finish any worse.” Well, duh, unless the NHL adds a 16th team to the Eastern Conference the Habs could skate a team of any 18 guys they like and not finish any worse. Stock also said he sells, which is great, but it’s not like this is Nashville or Phoenix. The Canadiens selling tickets and merchandise isn’t dependent on P.K. Subban. For CBC’s studio programming to improve, Stock needs to go.
Ron MacLean, Kevin Weekes and Elliotte Friedman followed up Stock’s “analysis” with some insight, rebuttal and facts, which I thought was great. Healy also put Stock in his place on the NHL lockout, where Stock thought the players did good to get to 50% HRR. Did anyone really believe the players would get less than a 50/50 split on HRR? Stock went on to talk over Healy.
Getting rid of Stock would also help improve CBC’s Hotstove, which was once the best sports studio programming on TV anywhere in North America. Of course that was also before the Twitter age (Satellite Hotstove, anyone?) when Saturday night was the time to get the latest trade rumours. The Hotstove, as it originally was, may not work anymore because of Twitter and 24/7 insider coverage on TSN with McKenzie and Dreger. But regardless, I’m not alone (see other media writers). If CBC is insistent on using the current format, then removing Stock and replacing him with Tim Wharnsby would probably do it for me. At least Weekes and Healy have their facts straight. Friedman needs more speaking time.
And then there were two things that were just odd about CBC’s broadcast on Saturday. The first was Andi Petrillo. Despite hosting the “iDesk” segment, there was no desk whatsoever. And the camera angles the CBC choose to use didn’t really help their case. Like her predecessors at the iDesk (Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek), CBC is wasting her talent on a useless segment. There is nothing worse than reading Tweets on-air, and it is becoming more common on every network. CBC should use her as the rinkside reporter for the afternoon game (when there is one). That would account for about 1/3 of their broadcasts this season. It’s great that she’s the first female studio host for HNIC, but what’s not great is the way they are using her.
The other oddity of CBC’s coverage was the second Don Cherry segment, at the first intermission of the Ducks @ Canucks game. It seems CBC has removed Cherry’s post-Leafs game segment for this one, which is odd in itself. What is even more odd is the arrangement. Ron MacLean sits down, while Don Cherry stands up awkwardly towering over MacLean. It was nice to see Cherry talk about teams outside the Northeast Division for once though.
Hockey Night in Canada will originate live from Calgary next Saturday. MacLean and Cherry will both be there. I’m not sure about the rest of CBC’s studio crew. Hockey Night will visit all seven Canadian cities this season.
Fact Checking… I thought Cherry was mostly on point with his Brian Burke analysis. Usually his line “Instead of getting Canadians he got US college guys and Finns and Swedes” would draw a lot of attention. Not so because of the rest of CBC’s studio programming. Anyone want to guess how many “Finns and Swedes” the Leafs have? Two, one from each country. They also have a, dare I say it, Russian.
HockeyCentral… Speaking of studio programming, Sportsnet’s HockeyCentral needs more Jeff Marek and Billy Jaffe. They two hosted the first HockeyCentral Tonight of the season on Monday and were excellent together. Jaffe never played in the NHL, he played college hockey at Michigan, but he sees the game brilliantly. His comparison of Patrick Kane’s goal on Saturday and Kyle Turris’ goal last night was great insight.
Sportsnet Scorebug… Sportsnet’s new hockey scorebug is a huge upgrade over their old one. It is very similar to the one Leafs TV used last season and it is designed by a Canadian.
Hockey Night in Canada is finally getting a much-needed makeover. Rick Ball and Kelly Hrudey will takeover calling the main 7:00pm Pacific/10:00pm Eastern game on many weeks this season. Scott Oake will continue to report rinkside and host After Hours for the second game of CBC’s doubleheader. Jim Hughson, Craig Simpson and Glenn Healy will continue to call the 7:00pm Eastern Toronto Maple Leafs broadcast most weeks. Bob Cole and Garry Galley will mostly do Canadiens and Senators games. CBC has demoted Mark Lee to Winnipeg Jets regional broadcasts, where he will work with Greg Millen. Dean Brown also remains with CBC to call selected games. CBC will only have four games twice this season, however, on Hockey Day in Canada and again on April 6. Kevin Weekes will also stay with Hockey Night in a new role.
In my opinion, it’s about time CBC made a change. Lee really brought down the quality of CBC’s western broadcasts. I’m not too familiar with Ball; however, I’ve heard good things about him from those in British Columbia. Hrudey’s new role will allow him to stay closer to home (he lives in Calgary). Usually during the playoffs Hrudey spends most of April and May in Toronto, away from his family.
I wonder if this might be the opportune time for CBC to move Bob Cole further aside. I’m a big a fan of Cole as anyone, I grew up with him, but if CBC really wants to promote Ball and Hrudey as the team of the future they should call a Conference Final. I don’t know if it will happen this year, but it seems that Ball is CBC’s secondary play-by-play commentator of the future.
CBC’s rinkside reporters will largely stay the same. Andi Petrillo, Elliotte Friedman, Scott Oake, David Amber and Cassie Campbell all return.
EDIT (1/17): CBC has made all of this official now. Kevin Weekes is taking Kelly Hrudey’s old spot in CBC’s studio. Elliotte Friedman is now part of the main studio panel, while Andi Petrillo takes over the iDesk. Don Cherry will do Coach’s Corner at the end of the 1st intermission of both the early and late games.
CBC has also confirmed that Cole, Brown, Galley and Millen will split up regional games in the east, while Lee and Millen will do regional Jets games.
I’m not sure exactly what motivated CBC to switch Weekes and Hrudey; however, it is worth noting Weekes lives in Toronto and Hrudey lives in Calgary. Instead of having both travel across the country weekly, this makes more sense.
CBC is usually broadcasting hockey games on Saturday nights in January, not announcing which games they will broadcast. Everything will return to normal in one week. CBC will broadcast games on 15 Saturday nights this season with limited regional action (at most there are two-way splits at 7pm). CBC will also broadcast six Saturday afternoon games in five windows, including the season-opener between the Senators and Jets next weekend. Another matinee will air on Super Bowl Sunday. Three more games will air on Thursday and Friday nights. And lost in all of the lockout talk is the fact that this is the 60th season of Hockey Night in Canada.
CBC’s schedule is highlighted by 18 all-Canadian matchups and ten Original Six games. The Canadiens lead the way with 16 games on CBC; the Leafs follow with 14 (March 2 is the only Saturday they don’t play). Ottawa and Vancouver has eight appearances each, while Winnipeg, Edmonton and Calgary all have seven.
Hockey Day in Canada is February 9. Winnipeg-Ottawa, Edmonton-Detroit, Toronto-Montreal and Calgary-Vancouver highlight more than 12 hours of hockey programming on CBC. Peterborough, Ontario will host Hockey Day this year. Lloydminster was originally schedule to host; however, it cancelled activities due to the chance the lockout would cancel the season. Lloydminster will host Hockey Day in 2014.
Fresh from shocking a lot of people and obtaining the rights to the 2014/2016 Olympic Games, CBC today announced they have been awarded the domestic broadcast rights for the 2015 Pan/ParaPan American Games in Toronto.
The deal includes English and French-language television rights, online, mobile, and non-commercial rights for the Games which will be held in July and August of 2015, in between their coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympics and the 2016 Summer Olympics.
Depending on who you talk to, the Pan-Am’s could either be a good thing for the city of Toronto, who are wanting to host the Summer Olympics sometime in the not too distant future, or it could be a gong show that doesn’t bring the best athletes available. Either way, it will be a great experience for Canadian athletes leading into Rio 2016.
I have my own personal disdain for the Pan-Am games coming to Toronto (see: FIFA Women’s World Cup), but that’s another rant for another day.
Click on through for the full press release from CBC.
I hinted last night about a major announcement coming from Sportsnet this morning. I honestly had no clue they were about to buy the Grand Slam of Curling. That’s right, not just the broadcast rights, but the name and events themselves. Sportsnet promises to broadcast the four annual Grand Slam events like never before. And through a sub-license, CBC returns to broadcast curling events for a 51st season.
You may remember last January that CBC quietly sub-licensed weekday coverage of the Grand Slams to Sportsnet. Before the coverage even got to air CBC terminated their contract with the Grand Slam, then owned by iSport Media. The public broadcaster had not received payments from the company for broadcasting the Grand Slam bonspiels. As a result, Sportsnet’s sub-licenese was also terminated. One Grand Slam went completely untelevised. iSport was able to arrange a deal with Global Television to show the season-ending Players Championship.
Not paying the CBC was just the first sign of financial problems for the Slam. Due to “technical problems” many teams were not initially able to claim their prize money following the Players Championship. All teams were eventually payed, but there was no doubt iSport was in serious financial trouble and the integrity of the Grand Slam was in question heading into the 2012 season.
The new deals eliminates iSport, which brings the CBC back to the table as the over-the-air rights holder; restoring curling to the channel after a short 8 month hiatus. Sportsnet will supplement CBC’s coverage as the cable broadcaster. Sportsnet will also run the tournament, following TSN’s example of having an executive role in the TSN Curling Skins Game.
It is becoming more common for Canadian networks to control the events in which they broadcast every day. Bell and Rogers buying large pieces of Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment is a prime example. Rogers also owns the Toronto Blue Jays. The curling is just more guaranteed programming for Sportsnet as long as they keep the series running. As part of their pending acquisition of theScore, Rogers also gains control of theScore Fighting Series in the coming months. Both events will likely fall under the new “Sportsnet Events” department.
Scott Moore was the head of CBC Sports when they bought World Curling Tour rights in 2007. He is now Rogers President of Broadcasting. Today Moore said, “Curling is an essential part of our Canadian sports fabric, and the Grand Slam of Curling is the cream of the crop in international curling events. We are proud to own and operate the Grand Slam of Curling, as it furthers Sportsnet’s commitment to producing world-class content, anyplace, anyhow and anywhere and allows us to integrate and engage the sports fan in innovative ways through our new events division. Sportsnet intends to grow the Grand Slam of Curling like never before.”
The World Competitive Curlers Association (curling’s version of the NHLPA) was vocally concerned about iSport’s financial troubles, including the lack of a television agreement for the Grand Slam. Their President Pierre Charette said today, “On behalf of the Grand Slam players, we are thrilled to welcome Sportsnet as the new owners of the Grand Slam of Curling. This is great news for the Canadian curling community as a whole. Sportsnet will operate events that are second-to-none, broadcast more games and take the Grand Slam of Curling to another level.”
The 2011-12 season of the Grand Slam of Curling begins November 14 with The Masters in Brantford, Ontario. I’ll post broadcast details as they become available closer to the start of the season.
The 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup begins this weekend in Japan. The tournament features the next generation of international women’s soccer stars. Expect some of the Canadian players to move on to the senior national team before the 2015 World Cup here in Canada. The Canadian team qualified by finishing 2nd in CONCACAF qualifying, losing to the United States in the final. Canada plays in Group D with North Korea, Norway and Argentina.
CBC will show all Canadian matches, as well as the final on tape delay. Sportsnet will re-broadcast Canadian matches in primetime. Sportsnet World will show 4 exclusive group stage matches. The TV schedule for the knockout stage is still to-be-confirmed.
Here is CBC’s press release, followed by the schedule after the break.
Sixteen under-20 women’s national teams are heading to Japan this month to stake their claim as the world’s best, and CBC has Canada covered with live broadcasts of all Team Canada games starting with the national team’s group play. Live coverage is available on CBC-TV and streaming live at cbcsports.ca.
CBC’s live coverage of Canada’s group play includes all three matches against their Group C opponents.
Andi Petrillo (@andipHNIC) hosts CBC’s coverage from the studio alongside analysts Nigel Reed (@Nigel_Reed) and former Canadian women’s national team member, Clare Rustad.
In addition to live streaming of each of team Canada’s matches on cbcsports.ca, Canadian fans can join the online conversation through Facebook and Twitter. Viewers can interact at facebook.com/cbcsports and by following @cbcsports and using the hashtag #CanFIFAU20.
All team Canada matches will be seen live on CBC-TV which concludes its FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup coverage with the Championship match on Saturday, September 8, 2012 . Check cbcsports.ca for up-to-date broadcast details.
This year marks Canada’s fifth participation at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. The next FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup will take place in Canada in 2014.
CBC and Sportsnet have a bit of history in teaming up to show international soccer. The two combined to broadcast last year’s Women’s World Cup from Germany. CBC has now signed a deal with Sportsnet that makes Sportsnet an official FIFA broadcast through 2014. Sportsnet is now the cable home to the upcoming 2012 Women’s U20, 2013 Confederations Cup, 2013 Men’s U20 World Cup, 2014 Women’s U20 (in Canada) and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Here is the press release.
CBC today announced an agreement with Sportsnet which will provide Canadians with an unprecedented level of coverage of upcoming international soccer events including the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.
The sub-licensing deal will see Sportsnet carry matches of the competitions for which CBC holds Canadian broadcast rights under its agreement with FIFA. These include the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Japan 2012, the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Azerbaijan 2012, the FIFA Futsal World Cup Thailand 2012, the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013, the FIFA U-20 World Cup Turkey 2013, the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Tahiti 2013, the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013, the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014, the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Costa Rica 2014, and the 2014 FIFA World Cup BrazilTM.
“This is an exciting arrangement which will ensure that Canadians are able to enjoy all of the action of ‘the beautiful game’ at its most prestigious level,” said Jeffrey Orridge, CBC’s Executive Director of Sports Properties. “CBC is committed to sharing the best in Canadian and international sporting events with viewers across the country, and this new agreement allows for broader coverage of these marquee FIFA tournaments.”
“Sportsnet is committed to providing fans with access to premium soccer content, and providing viewers with exceptional broadcast coverage,” said Scott Moore, President, Broadcast, Rogers Media. “We are thrilled to be part of bringing Canadians comprehensive coverage of the 2014 World Cup and other world-class FIFA events over the next three years.”
Under the agreement, Sportsnet officially becomes a licensed broadcaster of the 2014 FIFA World Cup BrazilTM.
This month, CBC connects Canadians to FIFA World Cup soccer as Team Canada’s first round of group play matches from the upcoming FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup from Japan will be broadcast live on the network. Complete broadcast details are available online with completed matches available on demand via cbcsports.ca. Sportsnet will also be broadcasting matches from FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, beginning August 20. Please visit Sportsnet.ca for broadcast schedule.
The 2012 Stanley Cup Final begins Wednesday May 30 in Newark, New Jersey. CBC and RDS will show all 7 games in Canada, while NBC will broadcast games 1 & 2 and 4 through 7. Here is CBC’s press release, then the schedule, followed by the NBC and RDS press releases after the break.
After three grueling playoff rounds comprised of 80 games in 45 days, 14 teams have been sent home empty handed. The Eastern Conference Champion New Jersey Devils and the Western Conference Champion Los Angeles Kings remain to do battle for hockey’s biggest prize in the 2012 Stanley Cup Final, exclusively on CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA. Live coverage of the entire best-of-seven series is available on CBC-TV and streaming live at CBCSports.ca.
“The last month and a half of Stanley Cup Playoff action has been filled with unscripted drama and excitement and with the Kings and Devils facing off in the Final, we don’t expect that to change,” said Julie Bristow, CBC’s Executive Director of Studio and Unscripted Programming. “This is what hockey fans across Canada have been waiting for all year, the two best teams in this year’s playoffs going head to head for the Stanley Cup on hockey’s biggest stage – CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada.”
The action gets underway on CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA with Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday, May 30 at 8 p.m. ET when Jonathan Quick, Dustin Brown and the rest of the Kings visit the Prudential Center to take on Martin Brodeur, Zach Parise and the Devils. Jim Hughson provides play-by-play for the Final alongside analyst Craig Simpson who joins him in the broadcast booth, while Glenn Healy provides additional analysis from between the benches with Scott Oake and Elliotte Friedman reporting from rinkside.
Ron MacLean hosts CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA’s coverage of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final along with Kelly Hrudey and P.J. Stock, providing insight and analysis for each game. Don Cherry and Coach’s Corner returns in the first intermission while the second intermission features the Hot Stove and Andi Petrillo at the Chevrolet I-Desk. Scotiabank Hockey Tonight precedes Games 1 and 2 and Games 5 through 7 if necessary.
“The Stanley Cup Final on Hockey Night in Canada is a tradition that has been bringing Canadians together for the last 59 years,” said Trevor Pilling, Head of Programming, CBC Sports and Hockey Night in Canada. “We pride ourselves on bringing the fans closer to the action and deeper into the stories every night as we live the excitement of the game together from across the country.”
On Sunday, June 3 at 9 p.m. local (9:30 p.m. NDT), CBC will air a behind-the-scenes look at this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs with Inside the Cup. The special is an authentic behind the scenes look into what the two conference champions have endured on the road to the cup and features commentary captured by microphones worn by players during the first three rounds of the Playoffs. Inside the Cup offers a unique look into the passion and intensity players feel as they battle for a chance to raise the Stanley Cup.
With every game broadcast also streaming live online at cbcsports.ca, viewers on the go can remain connected to the action. Download the Hockey Night in Canada mobile app for instant access to news, analysis and game highlights and enjoy the ultimate “second screen” experience, Hockey Night Playoff Pulse, as it captures the heartbeat of a nation through in-game polls, pools and near-live access to the best three minutes from every game.
Hockey Night in Canada Radio on SiriusXM hosted Gord Stellick continues Monday through Friday from 3-6 p.m. ET on channel 157. Show podcasts are also available for download from the iTunes Store.
Hockey Night in Canada Punjabi presented by Chevrolet continues with Harnarayan Singh handling play-by-play duties for the Stanley Cup Final. The Punjabi broadcasts will be available on Rogers Cable channel 799, Shaw Digital TV channel 328, Shaw Direct classic channel 480 and advanced channel 429, TELUS Optik TV channel 131 and on Bell TV and FIBE TV channel 232 and will also be streamed live and on-demand on CBCSports.ca.
Here is the 2012 Stanley Cup Final schedule. All times are Eastern.
(E6) New Jersey Devils vs. (W8) Los Angeles Kings
Game 1 – Wednesday 5/30 at 8:00pm ET on CBC*, NBC, RDS
Game 2 – Saturday 6/2 at 8:00pm ET on CBC*, NBC, RDS
Game 3 – Monday 6/4 at 8:00pm ET on CBC, RDS
Game 4 – Wednesday 6/6 at 8:00pm ET on CBC, RDS
Game 5 – Saturday 6/9 at 8:00pm ET on CBC*, NBC, RDS
Game 6 – Monday 6/11 at 8:00pm ET on CBC*, NBC, RDS
Game 7 – Wednesday 6/13 at 8:00pm ET on CBC*, NBC, RDS
*A 30 minute Hockey Tonight pregame show will air at 7:3opm ET on CBC before these games.
TSN will also show a 1-hour edition of That’s Hockey before all weekday Stanley Cup Final games. That’s Hockey 2 Nite will follow every game on TSN2.