Let's start with the original question: Who or what TV company do you think should get the NHL after NBC / Versus contract is up in 2011? There are two separate partners here that may "merge". After all, Comcast will be the controlling partner in NBC and they also own Versus, which looks quite like the ABC/ESPN arrangement. So I think the question may need to be rephrased, in order to satisfy the business aspect of an NHL deal after 2011... What broadcast network wants a few NHL games, including the 1 January marquee NHL Winter Classic, as well as select Sunday afternoon, Conference Final and Stanley Cup Finals games? What pay-TV network wants an exclusive window for NHL games? The answer for the first question is farily simple: NBC. Their contract with the NHL has actually made NBC money. Specifically, the Winter Classic is the most watched NHL game. NBC has also received some decent ratings for their playoff games. The answer for the second question isn't as easy. Although there is a school of thought to have ESPN partner with the NHL, ESPN always has bigger fish to fry. The NHL is the marquee property on Versus. And there isn't going to be anyone else bidding. So I suspect that the NHL will end up extending with both Versus and NBC.