With the announcement of the 2014-15 NHL regular season schedule, in comes the news that the Montreal Canadiens will be on national TV 32 times this upcoming season, at least in English. The TVA schedule has not yet been released, or at least not in a place that this unilingual anglo can easily find. When it is, we'll update you with that one.
The Habs will be on national broadcasts in Canada on three different English channels this season instead of two, with Rogers/Sportsnet taking over broadcast rights from CTV/Bell.
The Canadiens will be featured on Sportsnet's main channel eight times, including the home-opener against the Toronto Maple Leafs, which will be a bit of a culture shock for Anglo Habs fans who are used to seeing that game on Hockey Night in Canada. Montreal will also be on Sportsnet for one Saturday night game, against the Avalanche on October 18.
Hockey Night in Canada will still carry the majority of nationally broadcast Habs games in 2014-15, with 18 games being carried on the CBC. The shocker though, is that we won't see a Habs game on CBC until at least Saturday, November 8.
Why won't we be seeing the Habs on CBC for the first full month of the season? Because of the third English language national channel, City TV. If you're wondering why on earth the Canadiens will be playing on City TV, you're not the only one, but they carry six Habs games this season, two of them, both in October, are Saturday games. Nothing screams Saturday night hockey like City TV, am I right?
The rest of the City TV broadcasts are on Sunday, which must be part of Rogers' new "Sunday Night Hockey" thing they're going to try.
Luckily, three of the four Habs vs Bruins games will be nationally broadcast, one on Hockey Night in Canada, and two on Sportsnet.