AHL announces All-Star broadcast details

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League has announced that Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic will produce the telecast of the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross, set for later this month at Giant Center in Hershey, Pa.

The event, with the AHL All-Star Skills Competition set for Sunday, Jan. 30 (3 p.m. ET) and the 2011 AHL All-Star Game to follow on Monday, Jan. 31 (7 p.m. ET), will air live on TSN in Canada and on a comprehensive network of television partners in the United States. Visit theahl.com for a complete schedule of stations and air times for the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross on the AHL All-Star TV network.

Headlining the broadcast crew for the event is 2008 Foster Hewitt Award winner Mike Emrick, who is currently the lead announcer for NHL games on NBC and Versus as well as the TV voice of the New Jersey Devils. Emrick, who won the AHL’s Ken McKenzie Award for outstanding team promotion in 1977-78 when he was publicity director of the Maine Mariners, will handle play-by-play duties for the 2011 AHL All-Star Game alongside analyst Craig Laughlin, former AHL and NHL winger and longtime commentator for Comcast SportsNet’s live-game coverage of the Washington Capitals. Hershey Bears broadcaster John Walton will serve as rinkside reporter for the All-Star Game and will do play-by-play on Skills night, when he will be joined by former AHL player and coach and current Comcast SportsNet studio analyst Alan May as well as the New England Sports Network’s John Chandler with rinkside interviews. The television production will be led by Comcast SportsNet’s Emmy Award-winning executive producer Bill Bell.

The event also marks the continuation of a partnership between the AHL and TSN, in which the leading sports network in Canada will carry the AHL All-Star Classic to nine million households nationally. The league’s showcase event can also be seen this year on more than 25 regional networks in the United States, including Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Comcast SportsNet Chicago and Comcast SportsNet California as well as The Comcast Network in Philadelphia and Comcast Sports Southeast (CSS); Fox Sports Net’s Pittsburgh, Detroit, Ohio, Midwest, Houston, Southwest and Arizona affiliates; America One; and Altitude Sports and Entertainment, which reaches viewers across 10 states in and around the Rocky Mountains.

Time Warner Cable customers in upstate New York, Ohio, Wisconsin, Kansas City and Los Angeles will get to see the AHL All-Star Classic on their local Time Warner Cable Sports channel. Madison Square Garden Network will carry the event for its viewers throughout New York state and in parts of New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania, while fans in New England will be able to watch on the New England Sports Network (NESN) and Florida viewers will be able to catch it on Sun Sports and Bright House Networks. My Network TV in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. (WQMY-TV) will also air the event for fans in northeast Pennsylvania.

The broadcasts of the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross will also be available online via AHL Live (ahllive.com).

The 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross in Hershey will feature the top talent in the American Hockey League competing in the AHL All-Star Skills Competition and the AHL All-Star Game, a two-day event to be televised nationally in the United States and Canada. Of the 528 players to take part in the AHL All-Star Classic since 1995, more than 93 percent have competed in the National Hockey League, including Patrice Bergeron, Dan Boyle, Daniel Briere, Dustin Byfuglien, Brian Campbell, Zdeno Chara, Eric Fehr, Miikka Kiprusoff, Kari Lehtonen, Ryan Miller, Zach Parise, Bobby Ryan, Martin St. Louis, Jason Spezza, Eric Staal and Tomas Vokoun.

Tickets for the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross – which include admission to both the 2011 AHL All-Star Skills Competition at 3 p.m. on Sunday, January 30, and the 2011 AHL All-Star Game at 7 p.m. on Monday, January 31 – are nearly sold out. Tickets remain available for the 2011 AHL Hall of Fame Induction & Awards Ceremony (January 31, 11 a.m.) and the Post-Skills Party (January 30, 6 p.m.). Contact the Giant Center box office at (717) 534-3911 for information.

Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic – the official sports network Washington Capitals – delivers more than 500 live sporting events per year, along with Emmy Award-winning news, analysis and entertainment programming, to more than 4.7 million homes throughout the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia, and parts of West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Delaware. Comcast SportsNet’s digital portfolio, highlighted by CSNwashington.com and CSNbaltimore.com, is the region’s leading source for online sports news and information.