Today, AMI revealed its broadcast schedule for the upcoming 2020 Canadian National Blind Hockey Tournament Championship, taking place March 27-29 in Toronto.
In a historic first, the championship game on Sunday, March 29, will be shown on all three of AMI’s broadcast channels: AMI-tv, AMI-audio and AMI-télé, as well as streaming live at AMI.ca.
AMI-audio's live coverage begins from the Mattamy Athletic Centre in Toronto with the opening ceremonies on Friday, March 27, at 11 a.m. Eastern. The Neutral Zone’s Brock Richardson, Cam Jenkins, Bret Wills and Claire Buchanan provide pre- and post-game coverage as well as game recaps during intermissions all weekend.
On Sunday at 1 p.m. Eastern on AMI-tv and AMI-audio, veteran broadcaster Jim Van Horne and Nicco Cardarelli lead the broadcast team in English with live described play-by-pay and commentary from the gold medal game. AMI-télé’s gold medal coverage comes via Mike Ross and Robert Gignac.
“Our audience has been asking us to broadcast the Canadian National Blind Hockey Tournament on AMI-tv for years,” explains John Melville, Vice-President of Programming and Production for AMI-tv and AMI-audio. “We’re excited and honoured to bring the championship game to television alongside audio and introduce more Canadians to this thrilling sport.”
“I am very happy that AMI-télé can present this important sporting event live on its airwaves for the first time,” says Isabella Federigi, Vice-President of Programming and Production for AMI-télé. “I’m thrilled that our audience will have the opportunity to enjoy this exciting sport.”
Over 100 players will skate during the three-day tournament.
Blind Hockey 101
There are differences between ice hockey and blind hockey. An adapted puck makes noise and is bigger and slower than a traditional puck. Levels of vision for players range from legally blind—approximately 10 per cent vision or less—to totally blind, with the lowest vision athletes playing defence or goal. Three-foot high nets are used rather than the traditional four-foot nets; that keeps the puck low and near the ice so it can make noise and be tracked aurally. Teams must complete one pass prior to being able to score in the attacking half of the rink, providing both the partially sighted defence and goalie an extra opportunity to track the puck.
2020 Canadian National Blind Hockey Tournament schedule (all times Eastern)
Friday, March 27
11 a.m. – Opening ceremonies (AMI-audio)
11:15 a.m. – Open Division Game #1 (AMI-audio)
12:45 p.m. – Open Division Game #2 (AMI-audio)
Saturday, March 28
12:30 p.m. – Open Division Game #5 (AMI-audio)
2 p.m. – Open Division Game #6 (AMI-audio)
Sunday, March 29
10 a.m. – Open Division: Bronze Medal Game (AMI-audio)
1 p.m. – Open Division: Gold Medal Game (AMI-audio, AMI-tv AMI-télé)