Rogers cameras could give new look to NHL coverage

Chris Zelkovich
·Chris Zelkovich
Rogers cameras could give new look to NHL coverage

When Rogers launches its gargantuan multi-platform NHL coverage next week, hockey fans are going to have to absorb a lot of changes.

There will be games on channels that have never before seen a slapshot or butt-end to the nose, channels such as City and FX. There will be people who have never graced a hockey broadcast before, such as George Stroumboulopoulos. There will be Rogers people on CBC and CBC people on Rogers. And there will be CBC and Rogers and former TSN people everywhere.

But all those new faces in new places won't be the end of the newness. Rogers is experimenting with some new camera angles that could supply viewers with unique views of the game.

The first is the referee-cam, which was mounted on an official's helmet during a Toronto Maple Leafs pre-season game last week. The results, if this video is any indication, won't be earth-shattering but could offer some interesting breaks from the tried and true.

The voices you here belong to the Rogers production crew, something you wouldn't hear during a real broadcast. The images at the top are from monitors in the production truck.

 

It's not the kind of thing viewers are going to see a lot of, unless the Rogers production crew lose their minds. But used once of twice a game, it could provide something fresh. Ref-cams have been used before, but not during regular NHL broadcasts.

This camera could produce great results during melees in corners as well as any other incidents involving officials.

The second doesn't look quite as promising, though the video clip obtained by Yahoo! Sports was simply one example during one game. It was produced by a round camera called a POV (point of view) that was stationed at the Leafs' bench. 

This didn't produce much, but could catch some fascinating interplay between players on the bench and those on the ice as well as discussions between coaches and players. How much of that the teams and league would allow is another matter.

These two apparently are only the beginning of the bells and whistles Rogers is hoping to display now that it has cornered the market on national hockey broadcasts in Canada. Stay tuned for more.