Nearly 50 NHL Players To Participate In NHL Player Gaming Challenge
30 Apr, 2020
In coordination with ESL Gaming, the National Hockey League (NHL) announced the first-ever NHL Player Gaming Challenge presented by Honda – the NHL’s Official Automotive Partner – featuring NHL players representing all 31 clubs.
In addition, the NHL’s newest franchise, NHL Seattle, will take part in the league’s latest #HockeyAtHome initiative. Over the course of four weeks, beginning April 30, each club will be represented by one or two current players and featured in a one-time matchup against another club. Weekly matchups, storylines and broadcast details will be revealed at the beginning of each week. This league esports activation in EA Sports is supported by the National Hockey League Players’ Association.
The National Hockey League Foundation and Electronic Arts will donate a combined $100,000 in support of the CDC Foundation’s COVID-19 relief efforts.
The lineup of confirmed player talent for the NHL Player Gaming Challenge presented by Honda includes Brady Tkachuk of the Ottawa Senators taking on his brother Matthew, who plays for the Calgary Flames. The All-Star brothers will be joined by teammates Jake DeBrusk and Charlie McAvoy of the Boston Bruins, Evander Kane of the San Jose Sharks, Evgeny Kuznetsov of the Washington Capitals, Alex DeBrincat of the Chicago Blackhawks, Tyler Johnson of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Darnell Nurse of the Edmonton Oilers, as well as avid gamers Zach Hyman of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Filip Forsberg of the Nashville Predators. NHL Seattle, which begins play in 2021-22, will be represented by Seattle Seahawks tight end Luke Willson, who played hockey while growing up in LaSalle, Ont.
Beginning Thursday, April 30, Los Angeles Kings TV play-by-play announcer Alex Faust will host the series of weekly matchups, which will be released on Thursdays and Saturdays. NBC Sports will air the first series of games, including Calgary vs. Ottawa and Columbus vs. Winnipeg, beginning at 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN as part of its Hockey Happy Hour programming. Sportsnet will air select episodes on Sportsnet ONE over four consecutive weeks, starting Friday, May 1 at 4 p.m. ET with all matches made available on Sportsnet.ca and Sportsnet NOW. All matches will also air within NHL Network’s on-air programming or its Twitch channel.
“Over the past several weeks, the NHL, its clubs and player community have been very active with gaming initiatives in an effort to connect with fans while social distancing – such as charity tournaments, simulated games and nightly streams,” said Chris Golier, NHL vice president of business development and innovation. “The NHL Player Gaming Challenge presented by Honda will take gaming to another level. We know how competitive our players are, and coupled with the interaction between players, these series of competitions will be extremely fun to watch.”