It’s another edition of our NHL rumours to start your workweek. The deadline has passed, but there’s plenty to discuss. We’ll talk about the league’s American television rights, the women’s world championships and Calgary Flames in this edition of NHL rumours.
All NHL rumours come from the original source and are subject to change.
U.S Television Rights
Rumour: Saturday night’s Hockey Night in Canada’s Headlines segment said FOX has emerged as a secondary candidate to carry hockey in the United States.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) April 25, 2021
Analysis: Chris Johnston said Fox is challenging NBC to be the secondary provider of the NHL. Some are saying that Fox has become the frontrunner to have some part of the hockey package.
ESPN walked away with the primary rights after not carrying the league since 2004. The deal allows them more highlight time on SportsCenter, games on the network and a part of the ESPN+ streaming package.
NBC has been a great partner for the league, but NBCSN closing down gives them one less place to broadcast games. The USA Network will likely have games once NBCSN closes down at the end of the year. NBC has been a cornerstone of the channel’s sports programming, but FOX does have experience broadcasting hockey.
It’s been a while since FOX has carried games on the network and they made some weird ideas like the glowing puck. However, they are a major network and they do have FS1 as a major channel to broadcast games without having to rearrange their schedule.
IIHF Women’s World Championships
Rumour: Elliott Friedman on the same segment said the women’s world championship may still be played later this summer.
Analysis: There was plenty of disappointment when the tournament was called off for the second year in a row. The men’s IIHF Worlds will be played in Latvia in less than a month. United States star Hilary Knight said the women’s game is treated differently than the men’s. A case can be made after the men’s Under-18 tournament was merely moved while the women’s was cancelled altogether.
IIHF officials got criticism for not having a backup plan for the women’s world championships. They cited the province’s initial approval of the tournament and financial issues as a reason not to continue.
The IIHF is hoping to move the tournament slated for Nova Scotia to later in the summer. It could be a way to lead into the Beijing Olympics in 2022 as a showcase. Hopefully, there will be a tournament so the women’s game can be shown to the entire world
Rumour: The Athletic’s went over the dilemma the Flames have with the Seattle Kraken expansion draft.
Every team will make decisions ahead of the Seattle Kraken expansion draft.
— Ryan S. Clark (@ryan_s_clark) April 24, 2021
Analysis: Calgary’s main issue is what to do with captain Mark Giordano. The Norris Trophy-winning defenceman has another year and $6.75 million left on the last year of his deal next season. He does have a modified no-movement clause in his deal. He’d have to waive that in order to exposed in the expansion draft
Flames general manager Brad Treliving wants to protect seven forwards, three defenders and a goal. The alternate plan would be protecting eight skaters and risk exposing a talented young forward like Dillon Dube or Andrew Mangiapane. The recent Sam Bennett deal with the Florida Panthers gives the Flames some room to protect that duo. However, Milan Lucic would have to waive his no-movement clause to be exposed.
Teams must expose at least two forwards who are under contract in 2021-22 and have either played in 40 or more NHL games in the most recent season or played in 70 or more NHL games in the most recent two seasons.
The Flames want to protect Chris Tanev in the upcoming draft. Treliving does have the option of making a side deal with Seattle in order to entice the Kraken to draft someone else.