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Stanley Cup action dominates weekend programming

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Stanley Cup action dominates weekend programming
Hockey fans will be able to spend their weekend watching plenty of Stanley Cup Playoff action on NBC, VERSUS, CBC, TSN and RDS.
Hide the "honey do" list this weekend as Stanley Cup Playoff action will keeps fans busy day and night.

The Philadelphia Flyers and Boston Bruins start things off Saturday at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC, TSN and RDS. Fans also can watch iso-cams of the Flyers' Dan Carcillo and the Bruins' Marc Savard on NHL.com.

Viewership for NBC Sports' four Conference Quarterfinal broadcasts (1.72 million viewers) was up 18 percent compared to 2009 (1.46 million) and the highest since 2006. For TSN, the first round of the playoffs saw an average of 1.07 million viewers, 89 percent higher than its average audience in the first round of the playoffs last season 567,000. And RDS has averaged 1.34 million viewers for the Montreal-Washington series, 12 percent higher than Canadiens playoff games on RDS last season, so lots of folks figure to join in and avoid chores and watch hockey.

Saturday night, the Canucks and Blackhawks rekindle their "friendship" at 8 p.m. ET on VERSUS, CBC and RDS.

VERSUS' average viewership of 595,000 for the first round of the playoffs was the best for the NHL on U.S. cable in nine years and 35 percent higher than last year (442,000), leading VERSUS to its best April prime time performance in network history.

CBC's venerable Hockey Night in Canada also has seen large gains in viewers, pulling in the program's highest overall average audience for Round One since 2004. Audiences to Round One in 2010 averaged 1.422 million. In 2009, Round One on CBC had an average audience of 951,000.
 
Come Sunday, there is plenty more to watch as the Canadiens and Penguins play Game 2 of their series beginning at 2 p.m. ET on NBC, CBC and RDS. NHL.com also will have iso-cam coverage of the Penguins' Sidney Crosby and the Canadiens' Mike Cammalleri.

The Sunday night game will see the Detroit Red Wings take on the San Jose Sharks in Game 2 of their series. Puck drop in San Jose is 8 p.m. ET and can be seen on VERSUS, TSN and RDS.
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Quote of the Day

I don't have a crystal ball. Predicting is a real complicated thing. If we stay healthy, have enough depth and get the good goaltending we think we're going to have, you can go all the way. But a lot of things have to happen. There's going to be a lot of teams that think the same thing. Everyone made deals. We're all are optimistic about where we'll end up.

— Rangers general manager Glen Sather after being asked if he's constructed a team that can win the Stanley Cup before their 4-1 win against the Predators on Monday
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