Also, an alternative is to use a Slingbox. When I travel, I use it all the time to watch NHL CI games either on my laptop, phone or even on the hotels TV via HDMI cable from either device. And no matter which sports package I buy NHL CI, NFL ST, etc, I always have remote access to the games. And it saves me from paying extra for NFL ST Max or NHL Game Center Live. Not to mention that I can watch any recorded programming on my DVR or any live channels that are in my DIRECTV package.
I have a sling box, but it is an older one and the PQ is not very good for hockey. I have also seen a few hotels that had sling boxes blocked. I guess because of bandwidth issues.
With Game Center being less money and having more options than Center Ice, it is becoming a better value.