NHL launches production unit


The National Hockey League (NHL) announced the creation of NHL Original Productions. The league’s programming initiative will forces with renowned executive producer Ross Greenburg, through Ross Greenburg Productions.

Greenburg, who has won 51 Sports Emmy awards for his pioneering work at HBO over three decades, will work with the NHL’s Content Group on NHL Original Productions initiatives.

NHL Original Productions will create original, long- and short-form hockey programming for NBC Sports and the League’s media assets, beginning later this season. The new venture reflects the partnership forged between the League and NBC over the past six years and reaffirmed by the 10-year media rights deal signed in April. The launch of NHL Original Productions is the latest collaboration between the NHL and Greenburg – an alliance that produced two critically-acclaimed programs on HBO: Broad Street Bullies and the Emmy Award-winning 24/7 Penguins/Capitals: Road to the NHL Winter Classic.

NHL Original Productions also will develop original content for use by the League’s media platforms (NHL Network and NHL.com) as well as national and regional rights holders.

“Extending our programming and production capabilities through this relationship with Ross Greenburg will allow us to do more story-telling, bring fans further inside the game and promote our players through compelling content that our avid fans crave and new fans will embrace,” NHL COO John Collins said. “As we continue to grow our business, NHL Original Productions will enable our Content Group, headed by Executive Vice President Charles Coplin, and our Clubs and rights holders to benefit from Ross’s unparalleled talent and experience to present our sport in new ways.”

“Though I’ve long been a fan of the game, my passion for hockey — particularly the way it is played at its highest level in the NHL — was intensified by working on the Broad Street Bullies and 24/7 projects,” said Greenburg.

Among the projects on the drawing board for NHL Original Productions in 2011-12 are “Day in the Life” player documentaries revealing the regimens and personalities of NHL players appearing in NHL on NBC games.

Plans also are being developed for documentaries and features to coincide with the lead up to the NHL’s Centennial Celebration in 2017. Greenburg also will work with independent producers and filmmakers to produce hockey films and other documentaries and reality-based series focused on the sport.