It won’t be a glitzy Las Vegas affair — replete with a red carpet, showgirls and a celebrity guest list — but the National Hockey League isn’t letting June pass without putting on a show. In lieu of its annual awards program, the league will air “NHL Pause: Post to Post” on NBCSN Monday at 6:30 p.m. ET (4:30 p.m. ET on Sportsnet, in Canada). Model Camille Kostek will host the 30-minute show, narrating a slew of social clips created in hockey’s absence and even handing out some (virtual) hardware.
“We’re getting close to announcing our return to play,” NHL chief content officer Steve Mayer told Sportico, Penske Media’s new sports platform. “We’re going to start focusing way more on hockey, and we’re going to put what we’ve been doing during the pause to the side a little bit. Hopefully we can put a nice bow around it with this program.”
With a vibe somewhere between “American’s Funniest Home Videos” and a high school graduation sizzle reel, the show will conclude with one social media personality winning the prize for the best online content posted during the NHL’s hiatus.
“I’ve been thoroughly impressed with the creativity from fans and players on social media… so why not put it all together and mash it up into a fun show?” Kostek said. “I had a lot of fun taking everyone behind the scenes of their moments at home that will make many people smile.”
NHLers traditionally known to maintain quiet, team-first personas have shown new sides of themselves since stepping off the ice on March 12. Initially, many of their public messages were heartfelt words of support during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. But they soon shifted to include sillier viral videos — sometimes featuring wives and children trying out various dance crazes or dogs getting in on at-home workout routines. More recently, players have used their social platform to show signs of support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
“We’ve developed and found a few new NHL stars and personalities along the way, and I’m optimistic the sharing will continue,” Mayer said. “Even though we’re going back on the ice for the playoffs, we’re hoping it will continue because the players are now comfortable sharing their lives.”