Comcast-NHL Deal Puts Puck in 'Net

Comcast and the National Hockey League are giving the cable operator’s 7.7 million broadband customers exclusive access to NHL games over the Internet.

Live streams of games from the 2005-2006 season will be available starting Oct. 5.

Comcast’s broadband customers can watch two live NHL games every day (up to a total of 300) through the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Games will also be available on-demand on for 48 hours after broadcast.

Customers can access the games from any broadband connection using a special Comcast-branded Windows Media video player. Local blackout restrictions will be in effect for all games.

Hockey fans among Comcast subscriber rolls will get “an entirely new level of their favorite sport,” said Greg Butz, Comcast Online’s senior VP of marketing and business development. “We are offering our customers a fast, reliable connection and content they can't get from any other broadband provider.”

Doug Perlman, NHL senior VP of television and new media, said the live-streamed games are “a key element to our multi-media deal with Comcast."

Last month, Comcast's OLN network and the NHL came to terms on a hockey-rights deal that ESPN passed up. This season, OLN will carry 58 regular-season hockey games, plus playoff contests and the first two installments of the Stanley Cup.