Saturday the NHL is on NBC again for their game of the week broadcast. Just the sounds of that takes us back to the early days of cable when that is what you would get is a Baseball Game of the Week, Football Game of the Week, Basketball Game of the Week, heck even then you could only get The Superstars of Wrestling on at noon on a Saturday.
The funny thing about the NHL and the deal with NBC that pays the league just about nothing or may even charge to get on TV (which wouldn’t surprise me), is that in the event that the Capitals vs Penguins game goes longer then 1 overtime NBC will drop it in all markets except Washington and Pittsburgh to make way for the Kentucky Derby. This has happened before and it did not play well, especially to fans who didn’t know that they were going to do it.
I understand that the Kentucky Derby is a big deal in the States and as a rights holder they pay a lot and get huge ratings for it. They need to carry the event there is no doubt about it. We get that and know that it is all about money. Sure the likelihood in today’s NHL that a game would make it to double overtime is slim you just wish there was a better plan for the 2nd class sport in the US to be shown. It is hard to grow a sport and make it look important if you are willing to break away at the most exciting part of the game....sudden death...or sudden victory to the optimist.
You would think that with the amount of channels out there that 1 channel could at least pick up the feed or have it run uninterrupted on another "sister network". It is deals like this that make you almost wonder why the league bends over backwards for them. Even though we don’t get it in Canada it may be time to get it back on ESPN at least that way the chance of people stumbling upon it is there and they have at least 8 channels that they can move games to.