The NHL has had a partnership with the Versus cable network since the 2005 season and their current deal runs through the 2011-12 season. Besides the dispute with DirecTV that has kept the NHL off the airways since the start of the season, the general managers in Boca Raton, Florida, had issues trying to watch the games in their hotel. That's because their hotel didn't have Versus. From Chris Burke at FanHouse:â†µ
According to Greg Brady, a radio host on 640-AM in Toronto, the Boca Raton, Fla. hotel where the NHL's general managers stayed didn't even carry Versus, forcing some disgruntled GMs out in search of somewhere to watch Monday's thrilling Dallas-Washington game -- a Stars' shootout win.â†µ
This isn't the first time those in the NHL's inner circle have been shut out from watching live games. Just last season, during the conference finals, Red Wings goalie Chris Osgood told CBC Sports that Versus wasn't available at Detroit's team hotel in Chicago.
While Comcast and Versus are trying to expand their market share and original programming, it's still embarrassing for a major league not to be available everywhere.