Montreal Canadiens

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Montreal Canadiens
Canadiens de Montréal
Hockey current event.svg 2019–20 Montreal Canadiens season
Montreal Canadiens.svg
Conference Eastern
Division Atlantic
HistoryMontreal Canadiens
19101917 (NHA)
1917–present (NHL)
Home arena Bell Centre
City Montreal, Quebec
ColoursRed, white, blue [1] [2] [3]
Owner(s) Molson family (majority owner)
(Geoff Molson, chairman [4] )
General manager Marc Bergevin
Head coach Claude Julien
Captain Shea Weber
Minor league affiliates Laval Rocket (AHL)
Stanley Cups 24 (1915–16, 1923–24, 1929–30, 1930–31, 1943–44, 1945–46, 1952–53, 1955–56, 1956–57, 1957–58, 1958–59, 1959–60, 1964–65, 1965–66, 1967–68, 1968–69, 1970–71, 1972–73, 1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1985–86, 1992–93) [note 1]
Conference championships8 (1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1980–81, 1985–86, 1988–89, 1992–93)
Presidents' Trophy0 [note 2]
Division championships24 (1927–28, 1928–29, 1930–31, 1931–32, 1936–37, 1967–68, 1968–69, 1972–73, 1974–75, 1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1980–81, 1981–82, 1984–85, 1987–88, 1988–89, 1991–92, 2007–08, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2016–17)
Official website

The Montreal Canadiens [note 3] (French: Les Canadiens de Montréal) are a professional ice hockey team based in Montreal. They compete in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a member of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference.


The club's official name is le Club de hockey Canadien. [5] The team is frequently referred to in English and French as the Habs. French nicknames for the team include Les Canadiens (or Le Canadien), Le Bleu-Blanc-Rouge, La Sainte-Flanelle, Le Tricolore, Les Glorieux (or Nos Glorieux), Le CH, Le Grand Club and Les Habitants (from which "Habs" is derived).

Founded in 1909, the Canadiens are the longest continuously operating professional ice hockey team worldwide, and the only existing NHL club to predate the founding of the NHL. One of the oldest North American professional sports franchises, the Canadiens' history predates that of every other Canadian franchise outside football as well as every American franchise outside baseball and the National Football League's Arizona Cardinals. The franchise is one of the "Original Six" teams, a description used for the teams that made up the NHL from 1942 until the 1967 expansion. The team's championship season in 1992–93 was the last time a Canadian team won the Stanley Cup. [6]

The Canadiens have won the Stanley Cup more times than any other franchise. They have won 24 Stanley Cup championships, 23 of them since the founding of the NHL and 22 of them since 1927, when NHL teams became the only ones to compete for the Stanley Cup. [7] On a percentage basis, as of March, 2019, the franchise has won 25.0% of all Stanley Cup championships contested in the post-1926 NHL Stanley Cup era, making it the most successful professional sports team of the traditional four major sports of Canada and the United States. As of March, 2019, the Boston Celtics have the highest percentage of National Basketball Association championships with 23.3%, and in Major League Baseball, the New York Yankees have the highest percentage with 23.5%. [8] [9] The Canadiens also had the most championships by a team of any of the four major North American sports until the New York Yankees won their 25th World Series title in 1999.

Since 1996, the Canadiens have played their home games at Bell Centre, originally known as Molson Centre. [10] The team previously played at the Montreal Forum which housed the team for seven decades and all but their first two Stanley Cup championships. [note 4]


The Canadiens were founded by J. Ambrose O'Brien on December 4, 1909, as a charter member of the National Hockey Association, [11] [12] the forerunner to the National Hockey League. It was to be the team of the francophone community in Montreal, composed of francophone players, and under francophone ownership as soon as possible. [13] The team's first season was not a success, as they placed last. After the first year, ownership was transferred to George Kennedy of Montreal and the team's fortunes improved over the next seasons. [14] The team won its first Stanley Cup championship in the 1915–16 season. [15] In 1917, with four other NHA teams, the Canadiens formed the NHL, [16] and they won their first NHL Stanley Cup during the 1923–24 season, led by Howie Morenz. [17] The team moved from the Mount Royal Arena to the Montreal Forum for the 1926–27 season. [18]

The club began the 1930s decade successfully, with Stanley Cup wins in 1930 and 1931. The Canadiens and its then-Montreal rival, the Montreal Maroons, declined both on the ice and economically during the Great Depression. Losses grew to the point where the team owners considering selling the team to interests in Cleveland, Ohio, though local investors were ultimately found to finance the Canadiens. [19] The Maroons still suspended operations, and several of their players moved to the Canadiens. [20]

Game between the Canadiens and the New York Rangers in 1962. There's no action like hockey action by Louis Jaques.jpg
Game between the Canadiens and the New York Rangers in 1962.

Led by the "Punch Line" of Maurice "Rocket" Richard, Toe Blake and Elmer Lach in the 1940s, the Canadiens enjoyed success again atop the NHL. From 1953 to 1960, the franchise won six Stanley Cups, including a record five straight from 1956 to 1960, with a new set of stars coming to prominence: Jean Beliveau, Dickie Moore, Doug Harvey, Bernie "Boom Boom" Geoffrion, Jacques Plante and Richard's younger brother, Henri. [21]

The Canadiens added ten more championships in 15 seasons from 1965 to 1979, with another dynastic run of four-straight Cups from 1976 to 1979. [22] In the 1976–77 season, the Canadiens set two still-standing team records – for most points, with 132, and fewest losses, by only losing eight games in an 80-game season. [23] The next season, 1977–78, the team had a 28-game unbeaten streak, the second-longest in NHL history. [24] The next generation of stars included Guy Lafleur, Yvan Cournoyer, Ken Dryden, Pete Mahovlich, Jacques Lemaire, Pierre Larouche, Steve Shutt, Bob Gainey, Serge Savard, Guy Lapointe and Larry Robinson. Scotty Bowman, who would later set a record for most NHL victories by a coach, was the team's head coach for its last five Stanley Cup victories in the 1970s. [25]

Bell Centre has been the Canadiens' home venue since 1996. The arena is here seen in 2008, with banners celebrating the Montreal Canadiens centennial. Facade Centre Bell Center Front.JPG
Bell Centre has been the Canadiens' home venue since 1996. The arena is here seen in 2008, with banners celebrating the Montreal Canadiens centennial.

The Canadiens won Stanley Cups in 1986, led by rookie star goaltender Patrick Roy, [26] and in 1993, continuing their streak of winning at least one championship in every decade from the 1910s to the 1990s (this streak came to an end in the 2000s). [27] In 1996, the Habs moved from the Montreal Forum, their home during 70 seasons and 22 Stanley Cups, to Molson Centre (now called Bell Centre). [28]

Following Roy's departure in 1995, the Canadiens fell into an extended stretch of mediocrity, [29] missing the playoffs in four of their next ten seasons and failing to advance past the second round of the playoffs until 2010. [30] By the late 1990s, with both an ailing team and monetary losses exacerbated by a record-low value of the Canadian dollar, Montreal fans feared their team would end up relocated to the United States. Team owner Molson Brewery sold control of the franchise and the Molson Centre to American businessman George N. Gillett Jr. in 2001, with the right of first refusal for any future sale by Gillett and a condition that the NHL Board of Governors must unanimously approve any attempt to move to a new city. [31] Led by president Pierre Boivin, the Canadiens returned to being a lucrative enterprise, earning additional revenues from broadcasting and arena events. In 2009, Gillett sold the franchise to a consortium led by the Molson family which included The Woodbridge Company, BCE/Bell, the Fonds de solidarité FTQ, Michael Andlauer, Luc Bertrand and the National Bank Financial Group for $575 million, more than double the $275 million he spent on the purchase eight years prior. [32] [33]

During the 2008–09 season, the Canadiens celebrated their 100th anniversary with various events, [34] including hosting both the 2009 NHL All-Star Game, [35] and the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. [36] The Canadiens became the first team in NHL history to reach 3,000 victories with their 5–2 victory over the Florida Panthers on December 29, 2008. [37]

Team identity

The current Montreal Canadiens wordmark logo. Montreal Canadiens wordmark logo.gif
The current Montreal Canadiens wordmark logo.

The Canadiens organization operates in both English and French. For many years, public address announcements and press releases have been given in both languages, and the team website and social media outlets are in both languages as well. At home games, the first stanza of O Canada is sung in French, and the chorus is sung in English.

Crest and sweater design

Original design of the "CHC" logo. (1917-19, 1921-22) MontrealCanadiens1918.png
Original design of the "CHC" logo. (1917–19, 1921–22)

One of sport's oldest and most recognizable logos, the classic 'C' and 'H' of the Montreal Canadiens was first used together in the 1917–18 season, when the club changed its name to "Club de hockey Canadien" from "Club athlétique Canadien", [38] before evolving to its current form in 1952–53. The "H" stands for "hockey", not "Habitants," a popular misconception. [39] According to, the first man to refer to the team as "the Habs" was American Tex Rickard, owner of the Madison Square Garden, in 1924. Rickard apparently told a reporter that the "H" on the Canadiens' sweaters was for "Habitants". [40] In French, the "Habitants" nickname dates back to at least 1914, when it was printed in Le Devoir to report a 9-3 win over Toronto on the 9th of February. [41] [42]

The team's colours since 1911 are blue, red, and white. The home sweater is predominantly red in colour. There are four blue and white stripes, one across each arm, one across the chest and the other across the waistline. The main road sweater is mainly white with a red and blue stripe across the waist, red at the end of both arm sleeves red shoulder yokes. The basic design has been in use since 1914 and took its current form in 1925, generally evolving as materials changed. [43] Because of the team's lengthy history and significance in Quebec, the sweater has been referred to as 'La Sainte-Flanelle' (the holy flannel sweater).

The Canadiens used multiple designs prior to adopting the aforementioned design in 1914. The original shirt of the 1909–10 season was blue with a white C. The second season had a red shirt featuring a green maple leaf with the C logo, and green pants. Lastly, the season before adopting the current look the Canadiens wore a "barber pole" design jersey with red, white and blue stripes, and the logo being a white maple leaf reading "CAC", "Club athlétique Canadien". [43] All three designs were worn during the 2009–10 season as part of the Canadiens centenary. [44]

The Canadiens' colours are a readily identifiable aspect of French Canadian culture. In the short story "The Hockey Sweater", Roch Carrier described the influence of the Canadiens and their jersey within rural Quebec communities during the 1940s. [45] The story was later made into an animated short, The Sweater, narrated by Carrier. [46] A passage from the short story appears on the 2002 issue of the Canadian five-dollar bill. [47] [48]


Nos bras meurtris vous tendent le flambeau, à vous toujours de le porter bien haut.

To you from failing hands we throw the torch. Be yours to hold it high.

The motto is from the poem "In Flanders Fields" by John McCrae, which was written in 1915, the year before the Canadiens won their first Stanley Cup championship. The motto appears on the wall of the Canadiens' dressing room as well as on the inside collar of the new Adidas 2017–18 jerseys. [49]


Beginning in the 2004–05 NHL season, the Canadiens adopted Youppi! as their official mascot, the first costumed mascot in their long history. Youppi was the longtime mascot for the Montreal Expos baseball team, but was dropped from the franchise when they moved to Washington, D.C. in 2004 and became the Washington Nationals. With the switch, Youppi became the first mascot in professional sports to switch leagues. [50]


The Canadiens have developed strong rivalries with two fellow Original Six franchises, with whom they frequently shared divisions and competed in post-season play. The oldest is with the Toronto Maple Leafs, who first faced the Canadiens as the Toronto Arenas in 1917. The teams met 15 times in the playoffs, including five Stanley Cup finals. Featuring the two largest cities in Canada and two of the largest fanbases in the league, the rivalry is sometimes dramatized as being emblematic of Canada's English and French linguistic divide. [51] [52] From 1938 to 1970, they were the only two Canadian teams in the league.

The team's other Original Six rival are the Boston Bruins, who since their NHL debut in 1924 have played the Canadiens more than any other team in both regular season play and the playoffs combined. The teams have played 34 playoff series, seven of which were in the finals. [53] [54]

The Canadiens also had an intraprovincial rivalry with the Quebec Nordiques during its existence from 1979 to 1995, nicknamed the "Battle of Quebec."


Montreal Canadiens games are broadcast locally in both the French and English languages. CHMP 98.5 is the Canadiens' French-language radio flagship. [55] As of the 2017–18 season, the team's regional television in both languages, and its English-language radio rights, are held by Bell Media. [56] CKGM, TSN Radio 690, is the English-language radio flagship; it acquired the rights under a seven-year deal which began in the 2011–12 season. [57] In June 2017, Bell Media reached a five-year extension. [56]

Regional television rights in French are held by Réseau des sports (RDS) under a 12-year deal that began in the 2014–15 NHL season. [58] A sister to the English-language network TSN, RDS was the only French-language sports channel in Canada until the 2011 launch of TVA Sports, [59] and was also the previous national French rightsholder of the NHL; as a result, the Canadiens forewent a separate regional contract, and allowed all of its games to be televised nationally in French as part of RDS's overall NHL rights. [60]

With TVA Sports becoming the national French rightsholder in the 2014–15 season through a sub-licensing agreement with Sportsnet, [60] RDS subsequently announced a 12-year deal to maintain regional rights to Canadiens games not shown on TVA Sports. As a result, games on RDS are blacked out outside the Canadiens' home market of Quebec, Atlantic Canada and parts of Eastern Ontario shared with the Ottawa Senators. [58] At least 22 Canadiens games per season (primarily through its Saturday night La super soirée LNH), including all playoff games, are televised nationally by TVA Sports. [61] [62]

TSN2 assumed the English-language regional television rights in the 2017–18 season, with John Bartlett on play-by-play, and Dave Poulin, Mike Johnson and Craig Button on colour commentary. [63] [56] All other games, including all playoff games, are televised nationally by Sportsnet or CBC. [64] Bartlett returned to Sportsnet over the 2018 off-season, and was succeeded by Bryan Mudryk. [65] [66]

English-language regional rights were previously held by Sportsnet East (with CJNT City Montreal as an overflow channel), under a 3-year deal that expired after the 2016–17 season; the games were called by Bartlett and Jason York. Prior to this deal, TSN held the rights from 2010 through 2014; the games were broadcast on a part-time channel with Dave Randorf on play-by-play. [67] [55] [68]

Season-by-season record

This is a list of the last five seasons completed by the Canadiens. For the full season-by-season history, see List of Montreal Canadiens seasons.

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, OTL = Overtime Losses, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against

2014–15 825022101102211891st, AtlanticLost in Second Round, 2–4 (Lightning)
2015–16 8238386822212366th, AtlanticDid not qualify
2016–17 82472691032261991st, AtlanticLost in First Round, 2–4 (Rangers)
2017–18 82294013712092646th, AtlanticDid not qualify
2018–19 8244308962492364th, AtlanticDid not qualify

Players and personnel

Current roster

Updated March 16, 2020 [69] [70]

# Nat Player Pos S/G AgeAcquiredBirthplace
27 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Karl Alzner D L31 2017 Burnaby, British Columbia
40 Flag of Finland.svg Joel Armia RW R26 2018 Pori, Finland
41 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Paul Byron  ( A ) LW L30 2015 Ottawa, Ontario
8 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Ben Chiarot D L29 2019 Hamilton, Ontario
24 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Phillip Danault C L27 2016 Victoriaville, Quebec
13 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Max Domi C L25 2018 Winnipeg, Manitoba
92 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Jonathan Drouin LW L24 2017 Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, Quebec
32 Flag of Sweden.svg Christian Folin D R29 2019 Gothenburg, Sweden
11 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Brendan Gallagher  ( A ) RW R27 2010 Edmonton, Alberta
54 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Charles Hudon LW L25 2012 Alma, Quebec
77 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Brett Kulak D L26 2018 Edmonton, Alberta
62 Flag of Finland.svg Artturi Lehkonen LW L24 2013 Piikkio, Finland
39 Flag of the United States.svg Charlie Lindgren G R26 2016 Lakeville, Minnesota
53 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Victor Mete   Injury icon 2.svg D L21 2016 Woodbridge, Ontario
61 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Xavier Ouellet D L26 2018 Bayonne, France
26 Flag of the United States.svg Jeff Petry D R32 2015 Ann Arbor, Michigan
31 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Carey Price G L32 2005 Anahim Lake, British Columbia
14 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Nick Suzuki C R20 2018 London, Ontario
90 Flag of Slovakia.svg Tomas Tatar LW L29 2018 Ilava, Czechoslovakia
43 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Jordan Weal C R27 2019 North Vancouver, British Columbia
6 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Shea Weber  ( C ) D R34 2016 Sicamous, British Columbia
22 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Dale Weise RW R31 2019 Winnipeg, Manitoba

Honoured members

Some of the retired numbers at Bell Centre. Chandails retires CH, Plante, Moore, Harvey, M.Richard, Bouchard, Lach, Morenz.jpg
Some of the retired numbers at Bell Centre.

Retired numbers

The Canadiens have retired 15 numbers in honour of 18 players, [71] the most of any team in the NHL. All of the honourees were born in Canada. Howie Morenz was the first honouree, on November 2, 1937. [72] The NHL retired Wayne Gretzky's No. 99 for all its member teams at the 2000 NHL All-Star Game. [73]

Montreal Canadiens retired numbers
No.PlayerPositionTenureDate of honour
1 Jacques Plante G 1952–1963October 7, 1995
2 Doug Harvey D 1947–1961October 26, 1985
3 Emile Bouchard D 1941–1956December 4, 2009
4 Jean Beliveau C 1950–1971October 9, 1971
5 Bernie Geoffrion RW 1950–1964March 11, 2006
Guy Lapointe D 1968–1982November 8, 2014
7 Howie Morenz C 1923–1937November 2, 1937
9 Maurice Richard RW 1942–1960October 6, 1960
10 Guy Lafleur RW 1971–1985February 16, 1985
12 Dickie Moore LW 1951–1963November 12, 2005
Yvan Cournoyer RW 1963–1979November 12, 2005
16 Henri Richard C 1955–1975December 10, 1975
Elmer Lach C 1940–1954December 4, 2009
18 Serge Savard D 1966–1981November 18, 2006
19 Larry Robinson D 1972–1989November 19, 2007
23 Bob Gainey LW 1973–1989February 23, 2008
29 Ken Dryden G 1970–1979January 29, 2007
33 Patrick Roy G 1984–1995November 22, 2008

Hockey Hall of Fame

The Montreal Canadiens have an affiliation with a number of inductees to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Sixty-five inductees from the players category are affiliated with the Canadiens. Thirty-seven of these players are from three separate notable dynasties: 12 from 1955 to 1960, 11 from 1964 to 1969, and 13 from 1975 to 1979. Howie Morenz and Georges Vezina were the first Canadiens given the honour in 1945, while Guy Carbonneau was the most recently inducted, in 2019. Along with players, a number of inductees from the builders category are affiliated with the club. The first inductee was Vice-President William Northey in 1945. The most recent inductee was Pat Burns in 2015. [74]

In addition to players and builders, five broadcasters for the Montreal Canadiens were also awarded the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award from the Hockey Hall of Fame. The first two recipients of the award were Danny Gallivan and Rene Lecavalier in 1984. The other three award recipients include Doug Smith (1985), Dick Irvin Jr. (1988), and Gilles Tremblay (2002). [75]

Montreal Canadiens Hall of Famers
Hall of Fame players
Marty Barry
Jean Beliveau
Toe Blake
Emile Bouchard
Harry Cameron
Guy Carbonneau
Chris Chelios
Sprague Cleghorn
Yvan Cournoyer
Gord Drillon
Ken Dryden
Dick Duff
Bill Durnan
Tony Esposito
Bob Gainey
Herb Gardiner
Bernard Geoffrion
Doug Gilmour
George Hainsworth
Joe Hall
Doug Harvey
Tom Johnson
Aurele Joliat
Elmer Lach
Guy Lafleur
Newsy Lalonde
Rod Langway
Jacques Laperriere
Guy Lapointe
Jack Laviolette
Jacques Lemaire
Frank Mahovlich
Joe Malone
Sylvio Mantha
Dickie Moore
Howie Morenz
Reg Noble
Buddy O'Connor
Bert Olmstead
Didier Pitre
Jacques Plante
Ken Reardon
Mark Recchi
Henri Richard
Maurice Richard
Larry Robinson
Patrick Roy
Denis Savard
Serge Savard
Steve Shutt
Babe Siebert
Tommy Smith
Rogatien Vachon
Georges Vezina
Gump Worsley
Roy Worters
Hall of Fame builders
Scotty Bowman
Pat Burns
Joe Cattarinich
Leo Dandurand
Tommy Gorman
Dick Irvin
Hartland Molson
William Northey
Ambrose O'Brien
Sam Pollock
Donat Raymond
Frank Selke

Team captains

Head coaches

Source: "Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens". Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved December 12, 2008.[ permanent dead link ]

First-round draft picks

Franchise individual records

Franchise scoring leaders

These are the top-ten-point-scorers in franchise history. Figures are updated after each completed NHL regular season.

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games Played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; P/G = Points per game

Sources: "Statistics | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens". Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved June 27, 2009., "". June 17, 2010.

Maurice 'The Rocket' Richard is the Canadiens' all-time leader in goals. The trophy awarded annually to the NHL's leading goal scorer is named in honour of Richard. Maurice Richard 1945.jpg
Maurice 'The Rocket' Richard is the Canadiens' all-time leader in goals. The trophy awarded annually to the NHL's leading goal scorer is named in honour of Richard.

Records – skaters


* Indicates a league record.

Source: "Season records – Individual records – Skaters | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens". Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved December 12, 2008.

Records – goaltenders


* Indicates a league record.

Source: "Season records – Individual records – goaltenders | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens". Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved December 12, 2008.

See also


  1. While the Montreal Canadiens have won 24 Stanley Cups, they have actually won 27 league championships, as the Stanley Cup predates the NHA/NHL and was an inter-league championship prior to 1926. The Canadiens won two titles with the National Hockey Association, winning a Stanley Cup in 1916 and losing in 1917. The Canadiens have won 25 league titles in the National Hockey League, winning 23 Stanley Cups. As NHL champion, Montreal failed to win the Stanley Cup in 1919, when the Spanish flu cancelled the Stanley Cup finals against the Seattle Metropolitans of Pacific Coast Hockey Association, and in 1925, when they lost in the Stanley Cup to the Western Canada Hockey League's Victoria Cougars.
  2. The Presidents' Trophy was not introduced until 1985. Had the trophy existed since league inception, the Canadiens franchise would have won 21 Presidents' Trophies.
  3. Even in English, the French spelling Canadiens is always used instead of Canadians. The French spelling of Montréal is also sometimes used in the English media.
  4. Earlier venues for the Canadiens include Jubilee Rink, Montreal Westmount Arena, and Mount Royal Arena

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The National Hockey League (NHL) is shown on national television in the United States and Canada. With 24 teams in the U.S. and 7 in Canada, the NHL is the only one of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada that maintains separate national broadcasters in each country, each producing separate telecasts of a slate of regular season games, playoff games, and all seven games of the Stanley Cup Finals.

NHL 100 Classic

The NHL 100 Classic was a regular season outdoor National Hockey League (NHL) game held on December 16, 2017. The game featured the Ottawa Senators playing the Montreal Canadiens at TD Place Stadium in Ottawa. It was the first of the three scheduled outdoor regular season games in the 2017–18 NHL season.

CBC's deal with the NHL ran through the 2013–14 season, and was replaced in 2014–15 by a sublicensing deal with Rogers Communications. The deal includes airings of games on the conventional over-the-air CBC Television network as well as carriage of those broadcasts through digital media, including The deal came after controversy and discussion before and during the 2006-07 NHL season, when private broadcaster CTVglobemedia attempted to acquire exclusive Canadian distribution rights to the NHL for its own networks, including broadcast network CTV and cable channels TSN and RDS. Such a package, which would have left CBC without NHL hockey, would have increased TSN's previously existing coverage of NHL games; the attempt also came at a time when CTVglobemedia had outbid the CBC for Canadian television rights to the 2010 and 2012 Olympics, as well as the major television package for curling. Despite the rumours, it always seemed that CTV was unlikely to be interested in the nightly playoff coverage currently provided by the CBC, since weeknight games in April and May would conflict with new episodes of CTV's slate of American programming. As well, the title Hockey Night in Canada could not be used as the name is owned by CBC, unless CTVglobemedia were to pay royalties to CBC for use of the name. The current deal with CBC and Rogers maintains the 65-plus-year tradition of Hockey Night in Canada on CBC, but also allows Rogers to expand its coverage. A caveat of the deal limits CBC to the number of games per Canadian team it can show so that the seven Canadian-based teams, particularly the Toronto Maple Leafs, can distribute more games to regional carriers, thereby increasing the value of their local packages.


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