June 1, 2010

Canada's Stanley Cup Coverage puts NBC to shame

As in many things hockey, the Canadian Broadcasting Company is putting NBC's lackluster approach to the Stanley Cup Finals to shame.

Time to admit that yes, even with these guys, Canada does it better.

Evidence?  Exhibit A and B, from the CBC, below.  From the opening night (Saturday) of the Stanley Cup Finals...

Sinatra, the history of both franchises, and one of the wildest arenas in all of sport? Well done.  And from last night's coverage of game two of the Stanley Cup Finals...

My favorite part?  About 1:10 in, where you can see Patrick Sharp yelling from the bench at pulled Flyers goaltender Michael Leighton.  The production firepower for NBC's Stanley Cup Finals broadcasts don't even come close.  This is all I could find online from Game 1, and I can assure you that Game 2's intro video was just as short and lame.

I guess that should be expected, considering how low hockey is on the totem pole in the United States, but still - if the Stanley Cup is your property, NBC, wouldn't you give it half the consideration and production power of that overblown, completely out-of-touch venture you call Sunday Night Football?

Well, remember, this is NBC we're talking about.  Still, NBC network executives are probably ecstatic with the Stanley Cup Finals, considering their coverage on Saturday night produced the highest overnight ratings for the opening game of Stanley Cup Finals in 11 years and a 12% jump over last year's opening game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings.  While national viewership figures won't be available until tomorrow (Wednesday), we already know that the overnight figures for game 2 produced the highest-rated game 2 numbers in 35 years and a 21% jump from last year's game.

Still, couldn't they put a bit more effort into their production?  As it stands, CBC's coverage is all the more interesting because they are formulating an actual narrative.  A narrative - with all of the dramas, twists and turns, and so on - sells the broadcast.  Seems like common sense.

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