In less than a week, a lot of hockey fans will mysteriously decide to order HBO for at least a month (and it won’t be for the latest edition of Def Comedy Jam). The reasoning is simple: NHL fans are dying to witness HBO 24/7 Flyers/Rangers: Road to the Winter Classic.
If you’re one of those people, you might want an idea of when you can actually catch the first episode. HBO and the NHL released a useful guide of the viewing schedule for the first of the four-part series and a little information on when the other three will air.
The New York Rangers bid their privacy good-bye today as HBO’s “24/7” cameras joined the team for the month-long lead-up to the 2012 Winter Classic in Philadelphia.
Personally, I’d be a little uncomfortable with my every move at work being chronicled by cameras. Fortunately, that won’t ever be an issue, as I can’t imagine the ratings would be very good for “24/7: Road to the vending machine for a Coke Zero”.
But Rangers forward Brad Richards is cursed with a much more interesting life.
“I don’t want to use the word ‘annoying’ but it’s going to take some getting used to,” Richards said, as per ESPN. “Some guys will be different than others. Some will not pay attention and do their own thing and some will embrace it.”
Meanwhile, Brandon Prust might want to watch last year’s series to see how it works.
“I know I do a lot of swearing during the game, but I know they can edit that stuff,” he said.
If you haven’t seen the preview for this year’s “24/7” series, here you go:
Technically, the NHL still hasn’t officially announced this year’s Winter Classic on January 2nd between the New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers at Citizen’s Bank Ballpark. Yet on Wednesday, the hockey world was given even more proof that the Rangers and Flyers will be participants in the league’s mid-season showcase as HBO’s cameras invaded Rangers practice. The network behind the critically acclaimed 24/7 series was on the scene to capture promotional footage for the mini-series that will air in the weeks leading up to the Winter Classic.
After learning all about the show last year, there are two major questions surrounding the series this season. First, from a competitive standpoint, how quickly will the players be able to ignore the omnipresent cameras. Newly acquired Rangers forward Mike Rupp experienced 24/7 with the Pittsburgh Penguins:
“It takes a couple of days to get used to it. They’re good guys. My experience is that they don’t have crews who are like, ‘We need our footage,’ and will do whatever it takes to get it. They’re easy-going guys who are sensitive to some of the different things we do.”
For both the Rangers and Flyers sake, they’ll hope to acclimate themselves to the cameras as quickly as possible and avoid any long losing streaks during the filming process. All they have to do is ask the Capitals to find out how brutal it can be to struggle on the ice—only to have the cameras around off the ice.
The second question surrounding the 24/7 series is much more interesting from an entertainment standpoint: who will be the breakout star? Last season Bruce Boudreau and his charming Haagen-Dazs eating ways endeared him to hockey fans all over North America. Or maybe it was his #$@*& language in the $#@#*&in’ locker room?
“We all have our No. 1 pick,” [Tortorella] He’ll definitely be No. 1. The man with the beard (coach John Tortorella), that will be interesting to see.”
Suddenly I have visions of John Tortorella and Larry Brooks dancing through my head. Forget the games, televising those two in postgame interviews could be more entertaining than following the 40 players on the ice. Then again, 24/7 promises to have the likes of Sean Avery, Chris Pronger, and Scott Hartnell mic’d up during games.
Either way, this should be good. And just as a reminder—as if Avery and Pronger aren’t enough, we could be treated to four weeks of the sheer genius of Ilya Bryzgalov.
Who are you looking forward seeing on 24/7 this season? Are you looking forward to the usual suspects we mentioned or is there another player who you think will steal the show? Let us know in the comments.