“Welcome to the show, I’m your boyfriend George Stroumboulopoulos.”
Rogers Communications, the new exclusive Canadian broadcast rights holder for the NHL, announced today that six-time Gemini Award-winning TV personality George Stroumboulopoulos will become the new host of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada next season. For the last 10 years, Strombo was the host of the popular talk series George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight which began in 2005 as The Hour. Before hosting The Hour, Strombo splashed onto the scene as a personality on MuchMusic. In a way, his career comes full circle, beginning his career as a sports reporter at CJCL (Sportsnet 590 The Fan). Along with hosting Hockey Night in Canada, Strombo will host Sunday Night Hometown Hockey on City. Stroumboulopoulos is the cornerstone of Rogers’ NHL ‘dream team’, which includes mainstays Ron MacLean and Don Cherry (yes, Coach’s Corner will still be a part of Hockey Night in Canada). MacLean’s new duties will include hosting Hockey Day in Canada and be the on-site host of Hometown Hockey Community Celebration (think Kraft Hockeyville every Sunday). Sportsnet’s Daren Millard will now be the host of Wednesday Night Hockey, and Sportsnet’s chief NHL insider Jeff Marek will host Thursday Night Hockey on Sportsnet 360. Millard will still continue to host Sportsnet’s Hockey Central and Molson Canadian Maple Leafs Hockey on Sportsnet Ontario, and Marek will helm Sportsnet’s CHL Friday Night Hockey and Sportsnet’s coverage of the MasterCard Memorial Cup.
As an American, this dream team is very similar to the way CBS Sports and Turner Sports combine to produce NCAA March Madness (the umbrella title of television coverage of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament). Both CBS and Turner pool their resources for the tournament with TNT’s NBA broadcast teams joining with those from CBS. Maybe Sportsnet and CBC will pool their resources for their NHL coverage when it comes to creating their announcing teams and studio analysts.