The NHL’ s season came to a close on June 13th as the Los Angeles Kings defeated the New York Rangers in Game 5 to capture LA’s 2nd Stanley Cup. As the curtain closed on the hockey season, another closed on a huge chapter in the history of Canadian television. “Hockey Night in Canada”, the Saturday night special on the CBC will be forever changed beginning next fall, as CBC lost the broadcasting rights to Rogers Communication.
Does this mean the end of HNiC? As we know it, yes. The CBC will still broadcast games on Saturday nights beginning next season, but it will be under the Rogers platform with Rogers people in control. The graphics, play by play, theme songs, and general feel of the broadcast will be very different.
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What does this mean for the current HNiC employees? A good portion of the on-air talent has signed on with Rogers and will continue to broadcast games. In fact, their work will probably increase due to the amount of games Rogers is slated to broadcast. Ron MacLean and Don Cherry will still host “Coaches Corner”, but MacLean will not be the host on Saturday nights anymore. That job belongs to George Stroumboulopoulos, another noteworthy broadcaster in Canada. Elliotte Friedman and Scott Oake have both signed deals with Rogers, reporting on breaking news stories around the NHL. Play by play callers Jim Hughson and Bob Cole have also signed deals to continue their great work.
Watch the video below to relive highlights from this playoff season and the last six decades of Hockey Night in Canada on CBC Television.
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