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NHL, NBC Sports launch unique integration of Facebook and broadcast TV

by Staff Writer / Nashville Predators
NEW YORK – The National Hockey League and NBC Sports today unveiled a unique promotional campaign that integrates Facebook into the New Year's Day broadcast of the 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® (1 p.m. ET, NBC). The "Watch And Win" promotion will allow viewers a chance to win great prizes such as a Honda CR-Z sport hybrid coupe, and trips for four to both Universal Orlando Resort and the 2011 NHL® All-Star Game.

This year's NHL Winter Classic features two of the game's biggest stars as Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins take on Alexander Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh's Heinz Field.

  • Beginning today, fans register to play by can signing up at and clicking on the "Watch And Win" tab. 
  • At various times during the 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic broadcast on NBC, a Facebook message will appear on screen selecting a lucky winner.
  • The winner will immediately be called by an NHL representative to answer questions related to the broadcast.
  • If the winner answers correctly, he/she wins one of the prizes.
  • For Official Rules and complete details, go to

The NHL Winter Classic Challenge is open to US and DC residents only.  Canadian and American fans can watch the 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and get in on additional fun and prizes by following the NHL on Twitter on January 1.  The campaign was developed in partnership with RocketXL, a leading North American social media marketing agency.

Social Media Key Component of NHL Audience Development

According to syndicated research, NHL fans are younger and more tech-savvy than fans of other professional sports.  With more than 50 percent of NHL fans living away from their favorite team's home market, and the dialogue around sports being ideal for exploiting the consumer trend toward social media consumption, the NHL's strategy to shorten the distance between the League and fans via social media marketing is a natural.  In just one year, the League has grown its reach on Facebook to more than 1.2mm, and Facebook has become one of the largest sources of referred traffic to  Historically, the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic has dominated the social media conversation and in 2009 and 2010 ranked among the top trending Twitter topics on New Year's Day.

About the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®

Entering its fourth season, the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic is the NHL's annual outdoor game played in the United States that returns the game of hockey to its outdoor roots at large scale, iconic venues.  In 2011, the game will be played at Heinz Field, home of the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers, and will feature the Pittsburgh Penguins hosting the Washington Capitals.  Prior NHL Winter Classic games were played at Fenway Park in Boston (2010); Wrigley Field in Chicago (2009); and Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo (2008).  The 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic can be seen exclusively in the US on NBC; and in Canada on CBC and RDS.

Heralded by critics and adored by fans, the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic has firmly established itself as a national sports property in just three years. Last year's installment at Fenway Park became one of the most-watched regular season NHL game in 35 years, drove more than 1 million unique visitors to, and demand for tickets exceeded 300,000 fans.
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