NEW YORK -- NBC Sports has announced that the Chicago Blackhawks at Detroit Red Wings has been selected as the NHL Sunday Game of the Week for April 6 as part of the NHL and NBC's "flexible scheduling" policy. Coverage begins at 12:30 p.m. EDT.
The Red Wings recently reached the 50-victory mark for the third consecutive season, becoming the first team to accomplish the feat since the Montreal Canadiens (1975-76 through 1978-79).
The Blackhawks, with 80 points, have already surpassed their total from last season (71). Chicago is just four points out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference with six games remaining.
This Sunday on NBC, division rivals the New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins will clash at Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh, with Sidney Crosby set to return to the lineup.
FLEX SCHEDULING: NBC is in its third season as the network broadcast partner of the NHL with a new innovation: flexible scheduling for NBC's nine regular season dates (see below schedule). NBC can select from up to four games on Sunday afternoons. At least 13 days prior to the scheduled games, NBC, in conjunction with the NHL, selects one of those games as the "Game of the Week" to be broadcast during the NBC window. The other games remain available to the teams' regional carrier but will not be televised during NBC's broadcast window.
All NBC regular season games are broadcast on Sundays for the first time and all games are presented in high definition. NBC will broadcast postseason games on select Saturdays and Sundays, and Games 3-7 of the Stanley Cup Final in primetime.
CRITICAL ACCLAIM FOR THE NHL ON NBC: NBC's NHL coverage has received critical acclaim, earning praise for innovations such as "Inside the Glass," a reporter position between the teams' benches first introduced by NBC hockey producer Sam Flood. ESPN.com said of NBC's hockey coverage, "the NHL has never looked or sounded better in its free, on-the-air history." The Hockey News called "Inside the Glass," "the biggest innovation to hit televised hockey in recent years." "Hockey has found a network that will let the sport be the sport," said the San Jose Mercury News.
REMAINING 2008 NHL ON NBC REGULAR SEASON FLEXIBLE SCHEDULE
Sunday, March 30, 12:30 p.m. EDT New York Rangers @ Pittsburgh