TSN Hockey formerly called NHL on TSN is TSN's broadcast of NHL games. The show's current incarnation debuted in 2002.
Its coverage includes national broadcasts of NHL games during the regular season on several nights per week, regional coverage of the Montreal Canadiens and the Winnipeg Jets along with coverage of select series during the first 3 rounds of the playoffs.
TSN's coverage of NHL games is not limited to its own broadcasts as sister network TSN2 also frequently shows coverage of games televised by NBCSN.
TSN's NHL coverage will end nationally at the end of the 2013–14 NHL season after which Rogers Communications will gain exclusive rights to national NHL television broadcasts for the subsequent 12 years.
TSN usually televises 3 or 4 games per week during the regular season, with their primary night being Wednesdays, when they enjoy exclusive coverage.
This means that no other NHL game may be broadcast in Canada in English while TSN's Wednesday Night Hockey is on the air.
During the playoffs, TSN has 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 8th choices of first round series, 2nd and 4th in second round, and 2nd in the Conference Finals.
This means that there is the possibility of TSN covering a Canadian team during the playoffs.
This happened during 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs, as TSN televised Calgary Flames' first-round series against Chicago Blackhawks which they lost in 6 games and in the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs when Montreal Canadiens defeated Washington Capitals in 7 games.
TSN owned the national cable rights to NHL games in Canada from 1987–88 through 1997–98, after which CTV Sportsnet purchased the national cable rights to NHL games.
Prior to this, TSN's NHL coverage was sparse as they only acquired games a la carte.
From 1987-1998, they usually showed games twice per week through the regular season and in the first round of the playoffs, they provided extensive coverage of series not involving Canadian-based teams.
The 1986 Canadian coverage of the NHL All-Star Game was to be provided by CTV. However, CTV had a prior commitment to carry a U.S. mini-series and as a result, TSN took over coverage of the game in Hartford.
Toronto Maple LeafsEdit
TSN began airing Toronto Maple Leafs games regionally (presented by Molson) in the 1998-1999 season when they lost the national contract.
The package was originally for 30 games, but it was reduced to 17 once TSN re-acquired the national rights in 2002.
10 of 17 games were ones that TSN acquired from the NHL to air nationally.
The other 7 games, TSN acquired from the Maple Leafs as regional games, however, TSN eventually came to an agreement with the other 5 Canadian clubs to air these games nationally.
Play by play of the regional Leafs games was handled by Joe Bowen and Jim Ralph.
The deal expired at the conclusion of the 2006-07 season and since the 2007-08 season, every Maple Leafs game on TSN has been shown nationally and covered by the regular NHL on TSN crew.
Beginning in the 2015 season, owing to Bell Canada's ownership stake in the Leafs' owner, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, TSN's coverage will expand to 26 "regional" games. It is presumed that they will continue to air nationally.
Montreal Canadiens on TSNEdit
TSN is the exclusive regional English-language broadcaster for Montreal Canadiens games.
During the 2010-2011 season, TSN aired 24 Canadiens games to viewers in Quebec, Atlantic Canada and parts of Eastern Ontario (including Ottawa, Belleville, Kingston and Pembroke) on a TSN alternate feed.
The network will regionally broadcast 30 Canadiens games during the 2011-2012 and 2012-2013 seasons.
Dave Randorf and Dave Reid are the broadcast team for TSN's Canadiens regional broadcasts.
Occasionally other NHL on TSN broadcasters would substitute in on these broadcasts if one of either Reid or Randorf were working other things. TSN previously broadcast regional Canadiens games from 1998 to 2002.
Winnipeg Jets on TSNEdit
On July 21, 2011, it was announced that TSN has picked up the rights to telecast games of the Winnipeg Jets.
The agreement between the Jets and TSN is for 10 years and also gives radio rights to CFRW.
TSN Jets will broadcast more than 60 regional regular season and pre-season games to fans in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and parts of Northwestern Ontario.
The channel launched on September 20, 2011 for the Jets' first pre-season game against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Dennis Beyak (play-by-play), and Sara Orlesky (reporter) are the announcers for TSN's regional Jets broadcasts.
Darren Dutchyshen or Jennifer Hedger provide updates of other games in progress.
The studio hosts were Jim Van Horne (1987 to 1990) and later John Wells (1989 to 1995). Lead play-by-play announcer was Jim Hughson (1987–1998). Color commentators were Gary Green (1987-1998) and Roger Neilson (1987 to 1989).