A historic broadcast will hit the airwaves this month when Sportsnet and APTN deliver the first-ever NHL game in Plains Cree. Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) tosses a puck to the fans after defeating the Detroit Red Wings during third period NHL hockey action in Montreal, Tuesday, March 12, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

A historic broadcast will hit the airwaves this month when Sportsnet and APTN deliver the first-ever NHL game in Plains Cree. Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) tosses a puck to the fans after defeating the Detroit Red Wings during third period NHL hockey action in Montreal, Tuesday, March 12, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

APTN to broadcast hockey games in Plains Cree starting with Jets at Blackhawks

The broadcast of Canucks verses Blue Jackets game in Plains Cree will coincide with ‘Rogers Hometown Hockey’

APTN and Rogers Sportsnet agreed a three-year deal on Friday to broadcast NHL games in Plains Cree.

The first of six games to be broadcast on APTN in the Indigenous language will be when the Winnipeg Jets visit the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 19. The next will be when the two teams meet again on Feb. 9 in Winnipeg.

APTN will also broadcast the Calgary Flames’ visit to Detroit on Feb. 23, the Vancouver Canucks’ trip to Columbus on March 1, Vancouver hosting the Jets on March 15, and the Edmonton Oilers welcoming Anaheim on March 29.

The deal guarantees a minimum of six games will be broadcast in Plains Cree per season.

APTN broadcasted the first nationally televised game in Plains Cree between the Montreal Canadiens and Carolina Hurricanes last season.

Play-by-play announcer Clarence Iron and host Earl Wood were joined by analyst John Chabot as the Hurricanes edged the Habs 2-1 on March 24.

“I think it’s the type of event that will help open doors in our relationship with Canada,” outgoing APTN CEO Jean La Rose told host Dennis Ward on the television show “Face to Face.”

“Some people wrote to us saying, ‘I just tuned it in because I just wanted to hear what it sounded like but the guy was so exciting I watched the whole game.’”

Iron and Wood will return in the booth for this season’s six games, while Jason Chamakese will co-host the studio show alongside Chabot.

Sportsnet will provide the broadcast production for the six games each season.

ALSO READ: NHL called in Cree helps revive, sustain Indigenous language: hockey analyst

“Last year we partnered with APTN to deliver the first ever NHL game in Plains Cree and saw first-hand the positive impact it had uniting hockey fans across the country,” said Rob Corte, vice-president, Sportsnet & NHL Productions. “We know that Canada’s Indigenous communities have a great passion for hockey and we are excited grow our partnership with APTN to deliver more games over the next three years.”

The March 1 broadcast of the Canucks against the Blue Jackets in Plains Cree will coincide with “Rogers Hometown Hockey” visiting Peguis First Nation, Man., where Ron MacLean and Tara Slone will host a live broadcast of the same game on Sportsnet.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Emergency crews were called to a semi-truck crash along the Trans-Canada Highway at Oyster Sto’Lo Road on Friday, Jan. 22. (Cole Schisler/Black Press)
Semi truck crashes off the side of the highway in Ladysmith

Driver taken to hospital as precaution after single-vehicle crash Friday

A person experiencing homelessness in downtown Nanaimo last week. (News Bulletin photo)
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Change approach to combatting homelessness

Letter writers express frustration with status quo

Environment Canada is forecasting snow for the east Vancouver Island region the weekend of Jan. 23. (Black Press file)
Up to 15 cm of snow forecast for Nanaimo area this weekend

Snow to begin Saturday night, according to Environment Canada

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the legislature, Jan. 11, 2021. (B.C. government)
Vancouver Island smashes COVID-19 high: 47 new cases in a day

Blowing past previous records, Vancouver Island is not matching B.C.s downward trend

Nanaimo City Hall. (News Bulletin file photo)
City of Nanaimo councillors like new sustainable buying policy

Finance and audit committee recommends council approve new procurement policy

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Police are searching for an alleged sex offender, Nicole Edwards, who they say has not returned to her Vancouver halfway house. (Police handout)
Police hunt for woman charged in ‘horrific’ assault who failed to return to Surrey halfway house

Call 911 immediately if you see alleged sex offender Nicole Edwards, police say

A screenshot from a local Instagram account video. The account appeared to be frequented by Mission students, and showed violent videos of students assaulting and bullying other students.
Parents, former students describe ‘culture of bullying’ in Mission school district

Nearly two dozen voices come forward speaking of abuse haunting the hallways in Mission, B.C.

Joe Biden, then the U.S. vice-president, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau take their seats at the start of the First Ministers and National Indigenous Leaders meeting in Ottawa, Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau, Biden to talk today as death of Keystone XL reverberates in Canada

President Joe Biden opposed the Keystone XL expansion as vice-president under Barack Obama

Prince Edward Island’s provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. A lozenge plant in Prince Edward Island has laid off 30 workers, citing an “almost non-existent” cold and cough season amid COVID-19 restrictions. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Almost non-existent’ cold and cough season: P.E.I. lozenge plant lays off 30 workers

The apparent drop in winter colds across the country seems to have weakened demand for medicine and natural remedies

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
Disgraced Kelowna social worker faces another class-action lawsuit

Zackary Alphonse claims he was not informed of resources available to him upon leaving government care

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

SD62 bus driver Kerry Zado said it’s common to see drivers lose their patience and pass by his bus while he’s picking up students during the morning commute. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Concerned Island school bus driver says people still pass while red lights flashing

All buses in Sooke School District outfitted with stop sign cameras

Most Read