NHL Lockout, Day 19: Sportsnet To Air CHL Games In Place Of NHL
Sportsnet is filling the programming gap left by the NHL lockout “with Canadian Hockey League action from the Ontario, Quebec and Western Hockey Leagues,” according to Bruce Dowbiggin of the GLOBE & MAIL. There will be a “weekly Friday night national game" on the net beginning Oct. 12, and games will "rotate among the three major Junior leagues.” If the NHL “decides to wipe out an entire season, Sportsnet will look at expanding its junior coverage.” Sportsnet additionally is adding AHL games “on a national, not regional, basis.” Meanwhile, TSN Communications Dir Greg McIsaac said the net has no plans to show KHL games, “although we'll look at highlights when appropriate for ‘That's Hockey’ and ‘SportsCentre’” (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/4).
CALLED FOR OFFSIDES: SI.com's Stu Hackel reported the KHL's announcement Tuesday of a deal with ESPN "was, to say the least, a bit premature." No listings of the games "have appeared on any of ESPN's webpages," and there was "no quote from anyone at ESPN in the KHL's press release." ESPN said in a statement, "We can confirm that we have reached an agreement in principle to bring some KHL coverage to fans in the U.K. (on ESPN) and in the U.S. (on ESPN3). However, details of a deal and specific coverage plans are not yet solidified. We will share more schedule details as soon as possible" (SI.com, 10/3).
DON'T FEAR THE REAPER: In Nashville, Josh Cooper reports former NHLer Stu Grimson "will provide analysis during Predators games, whenever the season begins.” Grimson is “slated to join play-by-play man Tom Callahan for all home and road games after the NHL lockout.” Grimson last year called “most home games,” and the “full-time move to the broadcast booth should go smoothly” (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 10/4).