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06-04-2011, 07:39 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Lloydminster, AB
Country: Canada
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TSN used to cover the CHL in the early 90s. They would have a game of the week and cover the Memorial Cup. But TSN scaled back coverage of it to the point where I believe the Memorial Cup was the only CHL coverage it gave. When Sportsnet came on, the CHL saw this as an opportunity to feature itself better, so they jumped.

Now, as far as I understand it the problem with this is the CHL broadcast rights aren't owned by the CHL. The only events the CHL itself holds the broadcast rights to are the Subway Series and the Memorial Cup. The rest of the season is owned by each of the three leagues. I believe the OHL is quite happy with their NHL Centre Ice style package on Rogers Cable. The WHL, must be happy with being on Shaw TV, with their weekly regular season game and them covering one entire playoff series per round. I think the Q is the only league that doesn't have significant TV coverage, however I would imagine this will change this fall when TVA Sports launches.

The other thing is when would TSN fit in CHL coverage? It shows a NHL game nearly every night during the regular season. TSN2 seems to have a NBA game most nights too. During the playoffs, the NHL is on nearly every night and off-nights see the NBA, MLS and MLB. Add in the once a year competitions like the Brier, Tournament of Hearts, World Juniors, World Championships and golf and tennis and you have little to no room for the CHL.

As an aside, the only reason TSN carries the Telus Cup is because Hockey Canada mandates them to. The CHL is not covered by Hockey Canada, so broadcast rights are separate. However, all other minor hockey is covered by Hockey Canada. So I believe TSN wanted the World Juniors and World Championship broadcast rights. Hockey Canada said sure, but you must also air the Telus Cup final, Allan Cup final, Royal Bank Cup final and the Esso Women's final. So really, I doubt TSN would really care about relating Telus Cup experience with CHL experience.

I would love to see more WHL coverage on TV. But realistically, I don't know where it would fit. The Score would be the best option as far as programming goes, but they don't have the budget to produce their own live events. So I think this is the best it is going to get for the WHL.

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