Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Solid TSN Playoff Preview Coverage on April 7th

Less than one week to go, people...

TSN has announced their 3-hr playoff preview extravaganza to be broadcast Monday night starting at 7PM ET.

Sad about the thought of missing the Playoff Preview coverage? Don't worry - the NHL Network is picking up the broadcast, and TSN.ca is showing the goods live and on-demand.

Good times.

Here's how it all breaks down:

7PM ET: McGuire's Monsters (TSN, TSN.ca, NHL Network)
Pierre McGuire will announce his team of 'Monsters' - those who are the consummate team players - in his third annual Monsters special. Last year it was Sidney Crosby...will Ovechkin get the nod this season?

7:30 PM ET: Fantasy Playoff Special (TSN, TSN.ca, NHL Network)
This part of the extravaganza sees James Duthie hosting a fantasy draft among the so-called 'experts' - Hockey Insider Darren Dreger, analysts Dave Hodge, Mike Milbury, and Keith Jones (reigning Fantasy King). Each team will have 6 forwards, 3 D, and 1 goalie. Points are awarded according to goals and assists (1 point each), victory and shutout (for goalies, 1 point each). Expect a lot of smack talk as they criticize each other's choices.

8PM ET: Scotiabank NHL Draft Lottery Special (TSN, TSN.ca, NHL Network, Versus, NHL.com)
This is the second time the Draft Lottery will be televised (the first time being the "Sidney Crosby Sweepstakes" in 2005, and this time being the "Stamkos Sweepstakes"). There will be live coverage of the Lottery, and Stamkos will join the mix via satellite as he learns where he will begin his NHL career. Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie will also give his Top 10 list of players eligible for this year's draft and Mad Mike Milbury will be on hand to give his two cents before and after the big event in NYC.

8:30PM ET: NHL on TSN Playoff Preview Special (TSN, TSN.ca, NHL Network)
This 90-minute show is what we are all waiting for - the in-depth analysis of each playoff series. McKenzie, Milbury and Darren Pang will be around to tell it like it is (they may be right, or probably wrong). Everyone on the broadcast team will declare their predictions, and the ever-popular Maggie the Monkey will return to prove everyone wrong. Remember a few years back when the national media ran all kinds of stories saying that Maggie the Monkey was smarter than the so-called 'experts'? I wonder if it will happen once again - how great would that be? Anyways, Panger will also breakdown the goalie matchups, Dreger will name the 16 people (one from each team) who go into the playoffs in the 'hot seat', Hodge will do his 'Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down' segment, and there will be a feature on the active player with the most Stanley Cups to his name - Scotty Niedermayer.

If you don't have some kind of emergency, then I'd suggest tuning in to the broadcast. I always find these guys entertaining as hell, and their extensive coverage of various NHL events (see Free Agent Frenzy day, TradeCentre, the NHL Draft) is always worth watching.

You ain't gonna get this stuff on ESPN.

[Gary Roberts?]

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