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Red Wings national TV sked released (and actually listed)

From lovely Saint Joe’s in Ann Arbor (despite the fact that we’re across the road from Eastern Michigan University’s football stadium)...

The Wings tossed off the NHL’s press release regarding its national TV schedule, and we at least know that the Wings are going to make a bit of broadcast history (as for the regular TV sked, it has yet to be revealed—expect it to pop up in the next day or three):

League Partners Building On Ratings Records And Viewership Milestones

NEW YORK (August 18, 2011) – The National Hockey League (NHL) announced today the television schedules for national partners NBC Sports, VERSUS, CBC, TSN, TSN2, RDS and NHL Network U.S. for the 2011-12 NHL regular-season.

In the U.S., NBC Sports and VERSUS, which will be re-named NBC Sports Network effective Jan. 2, enter the first season of the landmark 10-year agreement between the NHL and NBC Sports Group announced in April.  This marks the seventh consecutive season each network has been a national television partner.  In Canada , CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada begins its 59th regular-season of NHL® broadcasts.  TSN, whose relationship with the NHL dates back to 1987, continues as the national English-language cable partner.  French-language telecast partner RDS has been televising NHL games since its inception in 1989 and enters its ninth consecutive season presenting every Montreal Canadiens game. 

NBC Sports and VERSUS this season are offering hockey fans more coverage than ever. The schedule is highlighted by 100 regular-season games across NBC and VERSUS, which will be re-branded the NBC Sports Network on January 2.  The coverage includes exclusive cable coverage on Wednesday nights, added games on Sunday nights including many exclusive nights, and live 30-minute pre- and post-game shows for every game on VERSUS. NHL Overtime also returns this season.

Okay, here’s the important part:

A new tradition will begin this year on NBC when the network starts its NHL broadcast coverage on Friday, November 25, the day after Thanksgiving in the U.S. , with a 1 p.m. ET original-six match-up featuring the Bruins against the Detroit Red Wings in Boston .  This will be the earliest in the season an NHL game has appeared on NBC in the past seven seasons.

The rest is more or less “blah blah”...

CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada features a 109-game broadcast schedule (including pre-season games) for the 2011-12 season, including a total of 29 all-Canadian match-ups. The 2011-12 schedule features 22 Winnipeg Jets games, 28 Montreal Canadiens games, 26 Toronto Maple Leafs games, 20 Ottawa Senators games, 17 Vancouver Canucks games, 13 Edmonton Oilers games and 12 Calgary Flames games.

A total of 77 regular season games will air on TSN, with 73 games featuring at least one Canadian team. TSN retains English-language exclusivity of Wednesday Night Hockey with a total of 30 games including four double-headers.  TSN also tees up the regular season with pre-season action featuring Canadian clubs.  TSN2’s regular season schedule features an additional 74 exclusive live NHL games.

RDS will again telecast all 82 Montreal Canadiens games.  The network also will televise a package of games featuring other NHL teams and full coverage of the NHL All-Star weekend.

NHL Network U.S. this season will televise 78 live games for its American audience, all in HD, focusing on Thursday nights and Saturdays, including some doubleheaders.  The last two Stanley Cup champions, the Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks, will square off against each other on NHL Network U.S. Saturday, Oct. 15, at 8:30 p.m. ET and a special 4 p.m. ET game the day after Thanksgiving in the U.S. will feature the Rangers in Washington to face the Capitals.  On Saturday evenings, NHL Network U.S. will again incorporate highly acclaimed CBC programming “Coaches Corner” and “Hotstove” into intermission content for American fans, and the network will have U.S. coverage of CBC’s Hockey Day In Canada on Feb. 11.

In addition, NHL Network’s signature show, NHL On The Fly™, returns across North America nightly providing highlights and analysis of every NHL game.  As always, the network will bring NHL fans exclusive coverage from all of the NHL’s signature events.  Information on the dates and times of the NHL Network live-game schedule for Canadian viewers will be released in the near future.

The 2011-12 NHL regular-season opens on Thursday, Oct. 6 – just 49 days from today – with NHL Face-Off.™  In both the U.S. and Canada , fans will be treated to a national doubleheader.  On VERSUS, the Boston Bruins raise a Stanley Cup championship banner to the rafters of TD Garden for the first time since 1972 when they host the Philadelphia Flyers at 7 p.m. ET.  CBC will open with the Toronto Maple Leafs hosting their long-time rivals, the Montreal Canadiens.  Later that night, at 10 p.m. ET, both CBC and VERSUS will have live national coverage from Rogers Arena as the defending Western Conference champion Vancouver Canucks host the Pittsburgh Penguins.

This season, four NHL teams – the Anaheim Ducks, Buffalo Sabres, Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers – will be playing regular-season games in three European capitals – Stockholm , Helsinki and Berlin – in 2011 Compuware NHL Premiere.  VERSUS and TSN on Friday, Oct. 7, present the Kings and Rangers from Stockholm, while the Sabres and Ducks play in Helsinki on TSN2.  On Saturday, VERSUS and TSN will televise the Ducks versus the Rangers from Stockholm, while TSN2 has the Kings and Sabres live from Berlin.  This is the fifth-straight year the NHL will contest regular-season games overseas and the first NHL game ever in Germany.

NHL regular-season play returns to the city of Winnipeg on Sunday, Oct. 9 at 5 p.m. ET when the Jets host the Montreal Canadiens in the first NHL season and home opener in the Manitoba capital since 1995.  CBC will have national coverage of the game in Canada, while NHL Network will bring the game to U.S. viewers.

The annual Hall of Fame Game will be played on Saturday, Nov. 12, when the Maple Leafs host the Ottawa Senators at 7 p.m. ET.  CBC’s Hockey Night In Canada will once again provide full coverage of all of the festivities that evening.  The Hall of Fame inductions are Monday, Nov. 14. 

The NHL’s biggest stars gather in Ottawa when the Senators and the city of Ottawa host the 2012 National Hockey League All-Star Celebration with the NHL SuperSkills® on Saturday, January 28, and the 59th NHL All-Star Game on Sunday, January 29.  The action from both nights will be covered live by CBC, RDS and NBC Sports Network, with celebrations and events in the city and around the region beginning Thursday, Jan. 26.

For the first time in the 12-year history of CBC’s Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada, the network will host the event from Prince Edward Island on Saturday, Feb. 11.  All seven NHL teams based in Canada will be in action on CBC during the network’s day-long celebration of the sport.

NBC Sports this season presents “Hockey Day in America” on Sunday, Feb. 19, featuring six hours of coverage and eight teams from some of the most avid U.S. hockey markets.  The coverage will start at noon ET with three regional games with staggered starts (Pittsburgh at Buffalo, San Jose at Detroit, St. Louis at Chicago) followed by a national broadcast of Boston at Minnesota at 3 p.m. ET.

In the 2010-11 season, the NHL and its television partners continued across-the-board growth while reaching new ratings and viewership records, including:

·      The highest average North American audience for a Stanley Cup Final in history across NBC, VERSUS, CBC and RDS.

·      The highest viewership for any NHL game ever on CBC (Stanley Cup Final Game 7) and the highest viewership in CBC history for the opening round of the playoffs.

·      The highest viewership for any NHL game on U.S. television in 38 years for NBC’s coverage of Stanley Cup Final Game 7.

·      The 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on NBC was the most-watched regular-season NHL game in the U.S. in 36 years.

·      TSN’s regular season viewership increased by eight percent.

·      VERSUS in 2010-11 televised the top two and four of the top five most-watched regular season NHL games in the network’s history.

Spiffy, yay, etc.

As for what this actually means for Wings fans in terms of national TV exposure here’s what we know:

per the Wings’ website, the following games will be aired on a national TV broadcaster in the U.S. and/or Canada—and keep in mind, Center Ice or GameCenter Live users, that anything that’s on the NHL Network means that you’re screwed out of coverage, and I’m going to post asterisks next to the games that aren’t Versus exclusives:

Sat Oct 22, 2011 Red Wings Capitals   7:00 PM NHLN-US
Fri Oct 28, 2011 Sharks Red Wings 7:30 PM NHLN-US
Sat Nov 19, 2011 Red Wings Kings 4:00 PM NHLN-US
Wed Nov 23, 2011 Flames Red Wings 7:00 PM TSN

Fri Nov 25, 2011 Red Wings Bruins 1:00 PM NBC, TSN
Wed Nov 30, 2011 Lightning Red Wings 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2
Fri Dec 2, 2011 Red Wings Sabres 7:30 PM NHLN-US
Tue Dec 6, 2011 Red Wings Blues 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2
Sat Dec 10, 2011 Jets Red Wings 7:00 PM CBC

Sat Dec 17, 2011 Kings Red Wings 7:00 PM NHLN-US
Wed Dec 21, 2011 Red Wings Canucks 10:00 PM TSN

Thu Dec 22, 2011 Red Wings Flames 9:30 PM TSN

Tue Dec 27, 2011 Blues Red Wings 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2* Not Versus exclusive
Tue Jan 3, 2012 Red Wings Stars 8:00 PM VERSUS

Sat Jan 7, 2012 Red Wings Maple Leafs 7:00 PM CBC, NHLN-US

Sun Jan 8, 2012 Red Wings Blackhawks 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2
Sat Jan 14, 2012 Blackhawks Red Wings 12:30 PM NBC, TSN2 Tickets
Mon Jan 23, 2012 Blues Red Wings 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2* Not Versus exclusive

Wed Jan 25, 2012 Red Wings Canadiens 7:30 PM RDS, TSN, VERSUS
Sat Feb 4, 2012 Red Wings Oilers 10:00 PM CBC

Mon Feb 6, 2012 Red Wings Coyotes 8:00 PM VERSUS, TSN2

Wed Feb 8, 2012 Oilers Red Wings 7:30 PM TSN

Fri Feb 10, 2012 Ducks Red Wings 7:30 PM NHLN-US

Sun Feb 12, 2012 Flyers Red Wings 7:30 PM NBC, VERSUS, TSN2

Sun Feb 19, 2012 Sharks Red Wings 12:30 PM NBC

Tue Feb 21, 2012 Red Wings Blackhawks 8:00 PM VERSUS, TSN2

Thu Feb 23, 2012 Canucks Red Wings 7:30 PM NHLN-US
Sun Mar 4, 2012 Blackhawks Red Wings 4:00 PM NHLN-US
Wed Mar 21, 2012 Red Wings Rangers 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2
Wed Mar 28, 2012 Red Wings Blue Jackets 7:30 PM VERSUS
Wed Apr 4, 2012 Red Wings Blues 7:30 PM VERSUS, TSN2
Sat Apr 7, 2012 Blackhawks Red Wings 4:00 PM NBC, VERSUS** Possible NBC Flex game

I’m guessing that every other Wings telecast will air on Fox Sports Detroit. The last game that neither the Red Wings or another carrier aired in Detroit was the game in 96 when Chris Osgood scored his only career goal against the Hartford Whalers, and they’ve never lived that down.

So let’s see…

14 games on Versus...

Only three appearances on Hockey Night in Canada...

17 games on TSN or TSN2...

9 games on the NHL Network (those games will still be aired on Fox Sports Detroit unless they’re Versus exclusives…

5 games on NBC...

And 1 game on RDS.

Overall, I count 15 games which will air exclusively on NBC or Versus, which means that Wings fans should expect to hear Ken Daniels and Mickey Redmond on Fox Sports Detroit or FSD+ 67 times this upcoming season.

Update: Here’s MLive’s take on the sked. We seem to have some mathematical differences…

The Detroit Red Wings will be on U.S. national TV an NHL-high 17 times, starting with a special “day after Thanksgiving game’’ Nov. 25 at the Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins on NBC (1 p.m.).

Here is the rundown of the Red Wings’ 11 other exclusive national TV games:

Nov. 30 vs. Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m. (Versus)

Jan. 8 at Chicago, 7:30 (Versus)

Jan. 14 vs. Chicago, 12:30 (NBC)

Jan. 25 at Montreal, 7:30 (Versus)

Feb. 6 at Phoenix, 8 p.m. (Versus)

Feb. 12 vs. Philadelphia, TBD (NBC or Versus)

Feb. 19 vs. San Jose, 12:30 (NBC)

Mar. 21 at N.Y. Rangers, 7:30 (Versus)

Mar. 28 at Columbus, 7:30 (Versus)

Apr. 4 at St. Louis, 7:30 (Versus)

Apr. 7 vs. Chicago, TBD (NBC or Versus)

In addition, these five non-exclusive games will be on Versus but also available on Fox Sports Detroit:

Dec. 6 at St. Louis, 8 p.m.

Dec. 27 at Nashville, 8 p.m.

Jan. 3 at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.

Jan. 23 vs. St. Louis, 7:30

Feb. 21 at Chicago, 8:30

Boston and the Rangers are the only other teams on U.S. national TV 17 times.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink


awould's avatar

hey, i grew up in ypsi. go say hi to the chippewa swimming pool for me, just down the street. if it’s still there….

Posted by awould on 08/18/11 at 06:59 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

If you count the games on the NHL Network, isn’t it 26 games?

Posted by MsRedWinger from the State where Tigers roam in the Spring on 08/18/11 at 07:35 PM ET

George Malik's avatar


Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/18/11 at 08:42 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

And as of 6:54 PM the mom is home smile

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/18/11 at 08:54 PM ET

awould's avatar

Good news.

Posted by awould on 08/18/11 at 08:56 PM ET

Sal's avatar

So much for dropping cable this year.

Posted by Sal from the shadow of the Great Smoky Mountains on 08/18/11 at 09:34 PM ET


A quick note for y’all with comcast, I can not speak for other cable systems, but it is their custom to give free access to the paid center ice channels for free for the first 7-10 days as an inducement to order for the year. I know for y’all in Detroit market will get our beloved Red Wings on the local stations but for us ex-pats and other fans outside Detroit, it is very welcome. It also lets me look at some of our so called competition.  They also give free access for a week after the all-star game as well as the start of baseball and basketball (apparently NOT this year heh heh) seasons.

Posted by omni1da from TX on 08/19/11 at 11:16 AM ET

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About The Malik Report

The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.