I just participated in a tele-conference NBC had regarding their plans for the NHL.
Participating on the call were Mike "Doc" Emrick (lead play-by-play); John Davidson (lead analyst); Pierre McGuire (lead inside-the-glass reporter); Bill Clement (studio); Ray Ferraro (studio); Cammi Granato (inside-the-glass reporter) and Sam Flood, NBC Sports Coordinating Producer and the producer of the NHL on NBC.
The goalie cam will be used Saturday, the Ranger goalie will have it attached to his helmet for a uniqure view of the game.
The studio will be at 30 Rock in NYC, and the ice rink outside the studio will be used during intermission to show and describe some of the play. Messier will be a guest this week in studio and Ed Olczyk will be the special guest in studio the 2nd week.
The "Inside the glass" reporters; Pierre McGuire, Joe Micheletti and Cammi Granato will bring the fans closer to the action. They will be cutting in with comments like who is trash talking on the ice, why isn't a certain player get the ice time expected, etc.
McGuire mentioned they do not plan on "dumbing down" the game for the viewers. John Davidson stated hockey is a very difficult game to broadcast, but they will be bringing the game to you and this is your chance to see the game in the best way possible.
JD was asked if the NHL will ever get bigger on the national level. He mentioned Shanahan, on his own dime, got together a bunch of people to make the game better. Many people were startled by this, but the next thing you know, the game is being played a whole different way. The game was not doing well, and now is our chance to show people how great the game really is. McGuire stated this is our chance to show the people in non-traditional markets how cool this game is.
Sam Flood was asked about the HD broadcasts. The primary game will be in HD and when the playoffs start, they may do more than one game in HD.
Doc mentioned the NBC crew will be doing a test game during the Philly-Detroit game tomorrow. We will not see it, but it will help fine tune the broadcasts. Sam Flood mentioned it will take some time to get the game broadcast they way they want it, but they will keep trying things in the future like the dasher cam.
Question was asked about the Olympic break, Bill Clement spoke up and said it will be a break for some players but will be a torture test for the players going to Torino. It will be a true test of their endurance.
A question was asked if Sidney Crosby had an influence on NBC scheduling some of the Pens games. Duh!!! (my comment)
Conference is still going on, will update if any pertinent information is released. This is also a raw post, please excuse and gramatical errors.
update 1:07pm, One last question was asked about the playoffs- Do you think the game will be called differently? Ferraro responded that the defense will pick up, the game will get even quicker than it is now and he hopes the game is called the way it is right now.