NBC and NBC Sports Network are putting on the foil before the puck drops on the next National Hockey League season. The same day the league released its 2013-14 schedule, NBC Sports Group announced that the broadcast net and its cable sibling will air a combined 103 regular-season games during the NHL campaign. NBC Sports has fared well with its NHL coverage, with last month’s six-game Stanley Cup Final drawing the championship series’ most viewers since 1994. Overall, this year’s NHL playoffs averaged 1.47 million viewers across 84 games on NBC, NBC Sports Network and CNBC, resulting in the most-watched playoffs since 1997.The 2013-14 package kicks off with the NHL season opener between the Washington Capitals at the Chicago Blackhawks, who will be raising their Stanley Cup banner before the game. Highlights of the broadcasts — 90 on NBCSN and 13 on NBC — will include the annual outdoor NHL Winter Classic (last year’s game was lost to the lockout) and the inuagural NHL Stadium Series, a set of four outdoor games including the Los Angeles Kings vs. the Anaheim Ducks in the first outdoor NHL game ever in Southern California. All games in the NBC Sports Group package also will be streamed live via NBC Sports Live Extra.
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