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NHL on CTV is the name of a former television program that broadcast National Hockey League games on the CTV Television Network.

Regular season coverage

For the 1984–85 and 1985–86 seasons, CTV aired regular season games on Friday nights (and some Sunday afternoons) as well as partial coverage of the playoffs and Stanley Cup Finals. Coverage didn't begin until November each season, so to avoid conflicts with CTV's coverage of the Major League Baseball post-season.

While Molson continued to present Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday nights on CBC, rival brewery Carling O'Keefe began airing Friday Night Hockey on CTV. This marked the first time in more than a decade that CBC was not the lone over-the-air network broadcaster of the National Hockey League in Canada.

The deal with CTV was arranged by the Quebec Nordiques (who were owned by Carling O'Keefe) and the 14 U.S.-based NHL clubs, who sought to break Molson's monopoly on NHL broadcasting in Canada. All of CTV's regular season telecasts originated from Quebec Citymarker or the United Statesmarker, as Molson shut them out of the other six Canadian buildings (as Carling did to them in Quebec City).

Following the 1985-86 season, CTV decided to pull the plug on the venture. Their limited access to Canadian-based teams (other than Quebec, whose English-speaking fan base was quite small) translated into poor ratings. For the next two years, Carling O'Keefe retained their rights, and syndicated playoff telecasts on a chain of channels that would one day become the Global Television Network under the names Stanley Cup '87 and Stanley Cup '88, before a merger between the two breweries put an end to the competition.

All-Star Game coverage

The 1986 Canadian coverage of the All-Star Game was to be provided by CTV. However, CTV had a prior commitment to carry a U.S. mini-series. As a result, TSN (using the American feed from ESPN) took over coverage of the game in Hartfordmarker.

Playoff coverage

In 1985, Dan Kelly and Ron Reusch called the Philadelphia-Quebec Wales Conference Final series.

In 1986, Kelly and Reusch called the Calgary-St.Louis Campbell Conference Final series. CTV's coverage was blacked out in Calgary, where CBC provided coverage.

Stanley Cup Finals coverage

In 1972, Hockey Night in Canada moved all playoff coverage from CBC to CTV to avoid conflict with the lengthy NABET strike against the CBC.

In 1985, CBC televised Games 1 and 2 nationally while Games 3, 4 and 5 were televised in Edmontonmarker only. CTV televised Games 3, 4, and 5 nationally while games were blacked out in Edmontonmarker.

In 1986, CBC only televised Games 1 and 2 in Montrealmarker and Calgarymarker. CBC would go on to televise Games 3, 4 and 5 nationally. When CTV televised Games 1 and 2, both games were blacked out in Montreal and Calgary.

Hockey Night in Canada rumours

The possible movement of Hockey Night in Canada to another broadcaster caused some controversy and discussion during the 2006–2007 hockey season. CTV had outbid the CBC for Canadian television rights to the 2010 and 2012 Olympics as well as the major television package for curling. The broadcast requirements would have focused on CTV-owned TSN (The Sports Network), a cable channel which already carries Canadian NHL hockey during the week as well as other NHL games throughout the season. CTV did, however, buy out the previous theme to CBC's Hockey Night in Canada for use in TSN's broadcasts immediately after the 2007–08 NHL season.



Colour commentators

Studio hosts

Studio analysts

  • Brad Park - 1985 playoffs (after Detroit was eliminated). Park retired from playing in the summer of 1985 and joined the CTV crew as a studio analyst for the 1985–86 season. However, he was hired mid-season to replace Harry Neale as head coach of the Red Wings, forcing him to leave CTV. He once again re-joined the crew for the playoffs, which Detroit did not qualify for.


  1. Kelly's deal with CTV, which last month began to send selected U.S. games into Canada, underscores his status as hockey's leading ambassador. CTV needed an expert commentator on its Friday night series to attract sophisticated Canadian viewers accustomed to the long-running Saturday evening extravaganza, Hockey Night in Canada. Who else but Kelly?

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