NEW YORK – January 20, 2011 – “NHL Game of the Week” returns with a Stanley Cup rematch when the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks host the Philadelphia Flyers this Sunday at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC. NBCSports.com will also stream the game live.
Mike “Doc” Emrick (play-by-play), Eddie Olczyk (analyst) and Pierre McGuire (inside-the-glass reporter) call the action. McGuire will pull double duty, hosting NBC’s studio show alongside analyst Mike Milbury on site at United Center in Chicago. NBC’s NHL coverage is produced by Sam Flood, the son of a hockey coach and former captain of the Williams College hockey team.
Last year, the Blackhawks defeated the Flyers in six games to win their first Stanley Cup since 1961. This season, the Flyers are tied for the NHL lead in points with 65 (with Vancouver) and the Blackhawks rank third in the Central with 54 points.
OLCZYK, who lives in Chicago: “The excitement in Chicago is at a fever pitch because two gigantic sporting events will be taking place Sunday in a matter of a few hours: the Blackhawks Stanley Cup rematch with the Flyers and the Bears playing the Packers for the right to go to the Super Bowl. The Flyers may feel that they are playing the entire city of Chicago. The excitement from these events is infectious, whether you’re a fan, player or coach. This was already one of the games that people circle on the calendar but because of the Bears-Packers game, it’s turning into more than just a Stanley Cup rematch.”
NBCSPORTS.COM: NBCSports.com will stream live all “NHL Game of the Week” broadcasts this season, including Flyers-Blackhawks. 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.
2010 STANLEY CUP VIEWERSHIP: The 2010 Stanley Cup Final Game 6 between the Blackhawks and Flyers on NBC was the most-watched and highest-rated NHL game in 36 years.
The game – which saw the Blackhawks defeated the Flyers, 4-3, on a goal by Patrick Kane 4:06 into overtime to give Chicago its first Stanley Cup since 1961 and end the NHL’s longest championship drought – was watched by 8.28 million viewers, the most since 1974 (8.29 million viewers, Boston-Philadelphia, Game 3 on NBC), 43 percent higher than 2009’s Game 6 (5.8 million viewers) and four percent higher than 2009’s Game 7 (8.0 million).
HOCKEY DAY IN AMERICA: The NHL and NBC Sports will celebrate America’s passion for hockey with the inaugural “Hockey Day in America” presented by McDonald’s on Sunday, February 20.
With six hours of coverage (Noon-6 p.m. ET) – which will include four NHL games – hosted from McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in Chicago’s Millennium Park, NBC Sports will tell the stories that demonstrate this country’s affinity for hockey – from hockey parents who chauffeur pee wees to practice before sunrise to the U.S. Pond Hockey Championships in Minnesota, played by amateurs amidst arctic temperatures, to ‘celebrity’ hockey played by actors and producers in Los Angeles to inner-city hockey in Washington, D.C. that has made a difference in the lives of countless children and young adults.
NBC Sports will broadcast four NHL games featuring eight teams from some of the most avid U.S. hockey markets. The first three games will be broadcast regionally with staggered starts. All viewers will begin the day with the same game before some viewers are taken to their regional game. The staggered starts allow for live look-ins of the other regionalized games during intermissions. The fourth game, Pittsburgh at Chicago, will be broadcast nationally. All games will be streamed live on NBCSports.com.
The three regional games are Detroit at Minnesota, Philadelphia at New York Rangers, and Washington at Buffalo. Exact start times and commentators for the regional games will be announced at a later date.
“Hockey Day in America” schedule (all times ET):
Noon “Hockey Day in America” coverage begins
12:35 p.m. First regional game begins
12:40 p.m. Second regional game begins
12:45 p.m. Third regional game begins
3:30 p.m. Pittsburgh at Chicago (national)
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 (except for “Hockey Day in America” on Sunday, February 20, Noon-6 p.m. ET).
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.
2011 NHL GAME OF THE WEEK REGULAR-SEASON FLEXIBLE SCHEDULE
(All Games Announced At Least 13 Days Prior)
Sunday, Feb. 6, 12:30 p.m. ET
Pittsburgh @ Washington
St. Louis @ Tampa Bay
Sunday, Feb. 13, 12:30 p.m. ET
Boston @ Detroit
Pittsburgh @ N.Y. Rangers
Los Angeles @ Philadelphia
Sunday, Feb. 20, Noon-6 p.m. ET
“Hockey Day in America”
Washington @ Buffalo (regional)
Detroit @ Minnesota (regional)
Philadelphia @ N.Y. Rangers (regional)
Pittsburgh @ Chicago (national)
Sunday, Mar. 6, 12:30 p.m. ET
Philadelphia @ N.Y. Rangers
Buffalo @ Minnesota
Sunday, Mar. 13, 12:30 p.m. ET
Chicago @ Washington
Los Angeles @ Dallas
Sunday, Mar. 20, 12:30 p.m. ET
N.Y. Rangers @ Pittsburgh
New Jersey @ Columbus
Sunday, Apr. 3, 12:30 p.m. ET
N.Y. Rangers @ Philadelphia
Minnesota @ Detroit
Tampa Bay @ Chicago
Sunday, Apr. 10, 12:30 p.m. ET
Detroit @ Chicago
Boston @ New Jersey
Dallas @ Minnesota
Pittsburgh @ Atlanta