NBC Sports executive producer Sam Flood said he and his group always are looking for innovations and ways to upgrade their presentation of the NHL, which he called the company's "No. 1 product."
Rather than bells and whistles, Flood and the NBC Sports Group team have kept firm to their commitment to honor the game and what Flood believes makes it special.
One of those innovations that will debut for the 2012-13 season is "Rivalry Wednesday," which will show traditional rivals facing off. It starts with the Boston Bruins playing at the New York Rangers on Jan. 23 and will include the renewal of rivalries Boston-Montreal and Philadelphia-Pittsburgh.
"Hatred in hockey is a good thing," Flood said. "So every Wednesday night we're going to have teams that don't love each playing. … It's an exciting new twist to it."
Flood said he's also proud of the building his hosting team of Liam McHugh, Mike Milbury and Keith Jones will be working out of at NBC's new international broadcasting center in Connecticut. The studio was supposed to open in February, but Flood said his group pushed hard to be ready to showcase it in time for Saturday's season-opening telecasts.