The National Hockey League announced the circuit’s national TV schedule today, listing the games that will be televised to wide audiences via Hockey NIght in Canada and The NHL on TSN in Canada and Versus and NBC down here in the lower 48. As you’d expect, the Capitals will be seen more frequently this season than in years past.
The Caps will be seen twice on Hockey Night on Canada, with both appearances coming in consecutive weeks. Washington visits Toronto on Dec. 6 and Montreal on Dec. 13, with both games getting the HNIC treatment up north.
Four Caps games will be shown on The NHL on TSN: Washington’s Oct. 21 visit to Calgary, its Jan. 20 trip to Ottawa, its Feb. 18 date with the Canadiens at Verizon Center, and its Mar. 24 visit with the Leafs in Toronto.
Seven (!) Capitals games will be aired on the Versus Network: Oct. 13 vs. Vancouver (first home game after the home opener), November 10 vs. Tampa Bay (Olie Kolzig’s return to D.C.), Nov. 24 at Minnesota, Dec. 16 at the New York Islanders, Jan. 20 at Ottawa (Inauguration Day), Jan. 27 at Boston and Mar. 16 at Atlanta.
Additionally, NBC will air eight late season Sunday afternoon games. As many as four of those games (Feb. 22 vs. Pittsburgh, Mar. 1 vs. Florida, Mar. 8 vs. Pittsburgh and Apr. 5 vs. Atlanta) could involve the Capitals.
Many of the Versus games involve exclusivity, meaning the Caps may not be able to air their games on Comcast on certain nights. Right now, the nights in question as far as those local telecasts are concerned are the Oct. 28 home game against Nashville and the Dec. 2 home game against Florida. It is believed the Caps will be able to air their Oct. 21 game against the Flames in Calgary because the game would start at 9:30 Eastern time, well after the 7 p.m. Versus game slated for that evening.
Caps single-game tickets are not on sale yet, but let that be a warning to you. If you absolutely, positively want to ensure seeing the Oct. 28 game with Nashville and the Dec. 2 game with Florida live, buy tickets for those dates.