Penguins-Blackhawks NHL Stadium Series game first-ever regular-season game scheduled for primetime on NBCby jmaloni
Gold medal Olympic teammates Sidney Crosby (Penguins) and Jonathan Toews (Blackhawks) face off at Soldier Field Saturday at 8 p.m.
Week's coverage includes tripleheader, T.J. Oshie's Olympic shootout performance vs. Russia, "Wednesday Night Rivalry" with Bruins-Sabres
NBC Sports Group's NHL regular-season coverage returns this week, highlighted by a potential Stanley Cup Final matchup, as the Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks face off in the NHL Stadium Series at Soldier Field in Chicago Saturday at 8 p.m. on NBC. Penguins captain Sidney Crosby and Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews headline a group of five players in Saturday night's game that won gold medals as members of Team Canada in Sochi on Sunday.
Emmy Award-winning play-by-play commentator Mike "Doc" Emrick, analyst Eddie Olczyk and Emmy Award-winning "Inside-the-Glass" analyst Pierre McGuire will have the call from Soldier Field. Coverage begins on-site with "NHL Live" host Liam McHugh, and former players and analysts Mike Milbury and Jeremy Roenick.
The Penguins (40-15-3, 83 pts.) come out of the Olympic break with a sizeable 16-point lead over the New York Rangers in the Metropolitan Division, and are five points clear of the Boston Bruins for the top spot in the Eastern Conference. The Blackhawks (35-11-14, 84 pts.) are tied with St. Louis for the Central Division lead and sit three points behind Anaheim for the Western Conference lead.
This week's Penguins-Blackhawks NHL Stadium Series matchup is the fourth and final game in the outdoor series of games at iconic venues across the country. The previous three games - Ducks-Kings at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and Rangers-Devils and Rangers-Islanders at Yankee Stadium in New York - all posted viewership records or milestones either nationally, or in local markets, on NBC and NBCSN.
In addition to Saturday night's Penguins-Blackhawks NHL Stadium Series game, NBC will kick off Sunday's "Hockey Day In America" tripleheader coverage at noon with a Metropolitan Division showdown between the Philadelphia Flyers and Washington Capitals from the nation's capital. Dave Strader (play-by-play) and Joe Micheletti (analyst) will have the call from Verizon Center in D.C.
NBC Sports Group's hockey tripleheader continues following Flyers-Capitals with the NHL Heritage Classic, as the Ottawa Senators face the Vancouver Canucks at 4 p.m. on NBCSN. Gord Miller (play-by-play) and Brian Engblom (analyst) will have the call from BC Place in Vancouver, British Columbia. Coverage of "Hockey Day In America" concludes Sunday with an "Original Six" matchup of bitter rivals, as the Rangers host the Bruins at 7:30 p.m. on NBCSN. Kenny Albert and Andy Brickley will provide live commentary from Madison Square Garden in New York.
NBC Sports Group's NHL coverage starts this week with a "Wednesday Night Rivalry" doubleheader on NBCSN, beginning with the Bruins and Buffalo Sabres at 7:30 p.m., followed by Los Angeles Kings and Colorado Avalanche at 10 p.m. Strader and Micheletti will have the call from First Niagara Center in Buffalo, and John Forslund and Drew Remenda will provide live commentary from Pepsi Center in Denver.
"NHL Live," NBC Sports Group's live NHL pre-game and post-game studio show, airs at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, and will present analysis on-site from the NHL Stadium Series at Soldier Field on Saturday, as well as throughout Sunday's tripleheader coverage on NBC and NBCSN. McHugh, Russ Thaler and Kathryn Tappen will serve as hosts this week, alongside Milbury, Roenick, Keith Jones and Anson Carter.