For those of us who are hockey fans south of the border, who grew up in the days before cable and satellite television, Hockey Night in Canada (HNIC) remains a special part of hockey lore that we envy.
Oh yes, we did have Peter Puck appearances during NBC’s coverage in the ‘70s and the CBS broadcasts in the ‘60s gave many of us our first exposure to the late great Dan Kelly. Still, as we read our copies of The Hockey News, we could only speculate what it was like to have a Saturday night dedicated to hockey on network television.
With the 500 + channels at our fingertips these days and the saturation of sports on television it is a brand new day. This weekend for instance, we have a major convergence of sports available to fans. Our choices are highlighted by the final weekend of spring training baseball, the NCAA Final Four, the race for playoff spots in the NBA and NHL, golf, tennis, auto racing, and soccer from leagues around the world.
Still, I was struck by the promo for HNIC on the NHL Network. Montreal at Toronto is the first game followed by Vancouver visiting Edmonton. It’s a Canadian double header!
I know I’ll be a bit busy tonight but that recorder will have to work too. Coverage starts at 6:30pm ET and the puck drops at 7:05pm ET.