And the exposure continues. The Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals will be featured in a four-episode reality series produced by HBO Sports’ 24/7 franchise. The show will focus on the Pens-Caps rivalry and, more importantly, on the Winter Classic. The episodes will air Dec. 15, 22 and 29 and Jan. 5 at 10:00 p.m. The Pens play the Caps twice in that time frame: Dec. 23 and, of course, Jan. 1. According to the NHL, the show will provide behind-the-scenes access and in-depth interviews of players and coaches.
Well, it looks like the league made the right call choosing Pittsburgh and Washington to play in the WC. It’s no small feat to have HBO create a mini-series around the event. In my opinion, this is absolutely huge for the NHL. It’s also a pretty big deal for Pittsburgh and Washington. You simply can’t beat this kind of exposure. The show will probably be similar to HBO’s “Hard Knocks” franchise, which chronicles an NFL team during preseason. For those unfamiliar, it’s basically an unfiltered, inside look at the team and its players.
While I can hear the screams of joy and excitement from fans of the teams involved, I can also hear the retching of those sick and tired of the Pens and/or the Caps. Too damn bad, haters. The NHL is going to market the hell out of the Pens-Caps/Crosby-Ovechkin story line as long as it can. Fans of hockey should just be happy the game is getting the “star treatment” from HBO. We obviously won’t know how this thing turns out until early January, but the idea is solid and the potential is intriguing.