NHL NETWORK UNVEILS NEW ON-AIR TALENT LINEUP FOR 2015-16 SEASON
Analysts Include Biron, Boucher, Hradek, Johnson, MacLean, Reid, Rupp, Smith, Stevens, Tortorella & Weekes
Live Studio Programming Begins Monday, October 5
SECAUCUS, N.J. (Sept. 22, 2015) – With 15 days to go until the start of the 2015-16 NHL regular season, NHL Network today announced the on-air talent lineup for its three signature studio shows, NHL Live™ Powered By Constellation, NHL Tonight™ and On The Fly™.
The roster of analysts includes longtime NHL Network personalities E.J. Hradek and veteran goaltender Kevin Weekes, plus Hall of Famer and three-time Stanley Cup champion Scott Stevens, 20-year veteran and two-time Stanley Cup winner John MacLean, two-time Stanley Cup champion Dave Reid, 2003 Stanley Cup winner Mike Rupp, longtime NHL executive and GM of the 1994 Stanley Cup-winning New York Rangers Neil Smith, 14-year head coach, 2004 Stanley Cup champion and Team USA 2016 World Cup head coach John Tortorella, and 16-year veteran Martin Biron, 15-year veteran Brian Boucher, and 12-year veteran Mike Johnson. The accomplishments among the group of former players, GMs and coaches include a combined 11 Stanley Cup championships, 74 Playoff appearances and over 6,800 career NHL games played.
Beginning on Monday, October 5 at 5:00 p.m. ET, NHL Live will be anchored by returning hosts Steve Mears and E.J. Hradek. NHL Tonight, NHL Network’s flagship program, will be hosted by former NESN anchor Jamison Coyle and former NHL.com and CBS Sports Radio voice Tony Luftman, with interviews and comprehensive highlights, look-ins and analysis of every game. On The Fly, revamped for the 2015-16 season as NHL Network’s nightly game recap show, will be hosted by former Fox Sports North host and reporter Jamie Hersch. Veteran NHL Network host Kathryn Tappen will appear across NHL Network programming after the new year.
Additional on-air talent bio information is available below, and further details on NHL Network’s programming schedule is available on www.nhlnetwork.com.
About NHL Network: As the TV home for the National Hockey League, NHL Network™ gives viewers an all-access pass to complete hockey coverage both on and off the ice, including live NHL games and special on-site coverage of NHL events, plus three signature studio shows, interviews, highlights and expert analysis from a variety of hockey insiders and former players. Additional programming includes behind-the-scenes features, player profiles and international and amateur hockey competitions. For more information on NHL Network, log on to nhlnetwork.com or follow @NHLNetwork on Twitter.
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NHL NETWORK ON-AIR PERSONALITIES
Martin Biron, analyst: Biron recorded more than 200 wins and posted a .910 goals against average in his 16 seasons as an NHL goaltender. In addition to goaltending for all three New York based teams in his career, Biron led the Philadelphia Flyers to the playoffs in 2008 and 2009. Biron has previously served as an analyst for NHL Network and TSN.
Brian Boucher, analyst: A 15-year NHL goaltending veteran, Boucher set the modern day record for the longest shutout streak of 332 minutes and 1 second, spanning five games as a member of the Phoenix Coyotes in 2002. In addition to prior work as an analyst on NHL Network, Boucher most recently served as a hockey analyst for NBC Sports and Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia.
Jamison Coyle, host: Having most recently been a studio host and reporter at New England Sports Network for NESN Daily as well as Hockey East, Coyle will serve as a host of NHL Tonight, as well as in-game updates and various other NHL Network programming.
Jamie Hersch, host: Hersch most recently served as a host and sideline reporter for Fox Sports North’s coverage of the Minnesota Wild and Minnesota Twins, spending three seasons hosting the pregame and postgame shows for Wild broadcasts, including extensive coverage of the Wild’s playoff runs from 2013-2015. Hersch also covered hockey for the Big Ten Network. Hersch will regularly host NHL Network’s nightly highlights show On The Fly.
E.J. Hradek, analyst: Hradek joined NHL Network/NHL.com in May 2011, working across the League’s multiple media platforms. He serves as the co-host for NHL Live and also pens the “Tuesday 10” column for NHL.com, which covers the top 10 stories from the week in hockey. Prior to arriving at NHL Network, Hradek spent 13 years as a Senior Writer for ESPN The Magazine and was part of the original staff that helped launch the magazine in March 1998. From 1996-98, Hradek served as a part-time pro scout for the Dallas Stars.
Mike Johnson, analyst: Johnson is a 12-year NHL veteran, who was selected to NHL All-Rookie team for the 1997 – 1998 season, when he scored 15 goals and added 32 assists as a forward. The following season, Johnson scored 20 goals for the Maple Leafs, a mark he would reach again for the Phoenix Coyotes in the 2002 – 2003 season. Johnson has previously served as an analyst on NHL Network and will continue to work as a hockey analyst at Sportsnet.
Tony Luftman, host: Luftman was most recently a digital host for NHL.com and served as an on-air talent on CBS Sports Radio. At NHL Network, Luftman will serve as a host of NHL Tonight, as well as in-game updates and various other NHL Network programming.
John MacLean, analyst: MacLean is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the New Jersey Devils, winning his first as a player in 1995 and his second as an assistant coach in 2003. He spent the first 15 of his 20 NHL seasons (1983 – 2002) with the Devils and was selected to two NHL All-Star Games in 1989 and 1991 as a forward. In addition to prior work as an analyst on NHL Network, MacLean most recently served as a hockey analyst for MSG Networks, including the pre- and postgame coverage for the Devils, a role he will continue again this season.
Steve Mears, host: Mears joined NHL Network in February 2013, and serves as the co-host of NHL Live. Mears previously covered the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs and Stanley Cup Final for NHL Network, as well as 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship games played by the United States. Prior to NHL Network, Mears worked for four seasons on the Pittsburgh Penguins’ radio and TV game broadcasts, as well as three seasons as the radio play-by-play voice of the New York Islanders.
Dave Reid, analyst: Two-time Stanley Cup winner Reid tallied 369 points in 961 career NHL games and was a key contributor to the 1999 Stanley Cup champion Stars and the 2001 Stanley Cup champion Avalanche. Following his playing career, Reid served as an analyst for NHL Network and has contributed to TSN’s hockey coverage.
Mike Rupp, analyst: Rupp is a 14-year NHL veteran, who scored the clinching goal for the New Jersey Devils in Game Seven of the 2003 Stanley Cup Final against the Anaheim Ducks. In addition to the Stanley Cup run with the Devils, Rupp skated in the playoffs as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers and Minnesota Wild. Rupp has previously served as an analyst on NHL Network.
Neil Smith, analyst: A longtime NHL executive, Smith was the general manager of the 1994 Stanley Cup champion New York Rangers. The Rangers’ championship was their first in 54 years, led by captain Mark Messier, whom Smith acquired in 1991 from the Edmonton Oilers. In addition to prior work as an analyst on NHL Network, Smith most recently served as a hockey analyst for Sportsnet.
Scott Stevens, analyst: Across the span of his 22-year career, Stevens served as captain of three Stanley Cup champion New Jersey Devils teams in 1995, 2000 and 2003. Stevens, who skated in over 1,600 regular season games, never recorded a negative plus/minus rating in any of his 22 seasons as a defenseman. Stevens was awarded the Conn Smythe trophy in 2000 and was inducted to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2007 in his first year of eligibility.
Kathryn Tappen, host: Tappen joined NHL Network in 2011 and currently provides coverage of the NHL’s signature events, including the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, NHL All-Star Game, Stanley Cup Playoffs and Stanley Cup Final, as well as other NHL Network programs. Tappen also serves as a host and reporter for NBC Sports’ coverage of the NHL, NFL and Notre Dame Football. Prior to her time at NHL Network, Tappen was the weekend anchor and weekday sports reporter at WJAR-NBC in Providence, RI, and was a studio host and anchor at New England Sports Network for Boston Bruins games and for SportsDesk.
John Tortorella, analyst: A 14-year NHL head coach, Tortorella led the Tampa Bay Lightning to the 2004 Stanley Cup championship. Tortorella was the head coach of the Lightning, New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks in his career (1999 – 2014), which was highlighted by eight different trips to the playoffs. Tortorella, ranks first on the NHL’s all-times wins list among American-born coaches, with more than 400 victories in 936 career regular season games. Tortorella will serve as the head coach of Team USA at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
Kevin Weekes, analyst: An NHL Network analyst since 2009, Weekes is an 11-year NHL goaltending veteran, who played in 348 regular season games as a member of the Florida Panthers, Vancouver Canucks, New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils. Weekes, who was drafted by the Panthers in 1993, led the Hurricanes to the 2002 Stanley Cup Final against the Detroit Red Wings.