When it comes to attracting a national audience, Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals remain a popular choice.
When NBC Sports Group released its full television schedule on Friday, featuring 13 games on NBC and 93 more on NBC SportsNetwork, the Capitals were on the docket for 13 national appearances [two on NBC and 11 on NBCSN].
Only the Flyers [5 times on NBC, 14 on NBCSN], Penguins [3-15-18], Blackhawks [5-12-17], Rangers [4-12-16] and Bruins [3-11-14] are on national television more often than the Caps.
The Red Wings [5-8-13] and Blues [2-11-13] also have 13 appearances on national television.
The Caps’ two appearances on NBC will be their Super Bowl Sunday home game against the Detroit Red Wings on Feb. 2, and their Sunday matinee against the Flyers on Sunday, March 2. Both games will be 12:30 starts.
The Caps will begin their string of appearances on NBC Sports Network on opening night when they visit the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks. Before the game the Blackhawks will raise their 2013 Stanley Cup banner at the UnitedCenter.
That should be an emotional night for Caps right wing Troy Brouwer, who won a Stanley Cup with the Hawks in 2010 and makes his offseason home near Chicago.
Here are some other highlights from the NBC/NBCSN schedule:
- The 2014 NHL Winter Classic at Michigan Stadium between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Detroit Red Wings on Jan. 1 at 1 p.m. on NBC.
- The inaugural NHL Stadium Series, featuring four games played in iconic outdoor venues between January 25 and March 1, including: Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Calif., Yankee Stadium in New York, N.Y., and Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. Plus the NHL Heritage Classic at BC Place in Vancouver, B.C. on March 2.
- The return of Wednesday Night Rivalry on NBC Sports Network. The 2013-14 NHL season on NBCSN will feature 24 Wednesday Night Rivalry telecasts -- up from 15 last year.
- A Stanley Cup Final rematch between the Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Bruins on Sunday, January 19 on NBC.
- Eastern Conference Final rematch between the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, Oct. 30 on NBCSN.
- Western Conference Final rematch between the Los Angeles Kings and the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday, Dec. 30 on NBCSN.
- The Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings, who went to seven games in the 2013 Western Conference Semifinals, will face off twice on NBC Sports Network. The Red Wings host the Blackhawks on Wednesday Night Rivalry, Jan. 22. On Sunday, March 16, the Red Wings travel to Chicago to take on the Blackhawks.
- In a renewal of their fierce intra-state rivalry, the Flyers and Penguins meet three times on NBC and NBC Sports Network this season. The Penguins host the Flyers on Wednesday Night Rivalry, Nov.13 on NBC Sports Network. On Sunday, March 16 the Flyers return to Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins on NBC. The two teams meet again on Saturday, April 12 on NBC.