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Tape of Guatemala - Canada

An Observer

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No, I am 99% certain that you can not get Sportsnet on satellite by any means in the UK.

There is a "Maple Leaf" pub in Covent Garden in London. They show Hockey Night in Canada in the playoffs, but usually on a delayed basis. Tapes sound like they are flown in! I didn't get the impression they get the CBC live, unless Channel 5 is relaying their broadcast. (FYI, usually one NHL match a week is live in the UK. I don't know about the new North American Sports channel.)


A jolly good (delayed) show

It's hockey night at a pub in England where fans gather to watch the game


Saturday, May 29, 2004 - Page S1

LONDON -- Long after the skates have been removed and the Zambonis have done their work, in an ancient, beer-soaked laneway on the wrong side of the ocean, it will be Hockey Night in Canada again tomorrow, 18 hours late.

In a 20-year-old custom that counts among Britain's odder sports traditions, a backstreet pub in London's Covent Garden undergoes a strange act of time travel on the nights following National Hockey League playoff games. Friday becomes Thursday, here becomes there, and a potent blend of beer and patriotism brings a long-finished game alive.

Last night, as Londoners hoisted their early evening pints on the sidewalk outside the Maple Leaf pub, the scene inside suddenly changed. The suits and neckties of the business crowd gave way to unkempt hair, baggy pants and jerseys, and a mood of anticipation filled the air.

At exactly 7 p.m., pub manager Scott McPhail popped a tape into the VCR, and Game 2 of the Stanley Cup playoffs filled the screens around the rooms. This quiet corner of London suddenly took on the jubilant mood of 17th Avenue in Calgary, and nobody seemed bothered, or even aware, that the game had ended a day and a night ago with Calgary's 4-1 defeat.

"I have no idea how it ended, and you're dead if you tell me," said Dave Brooks, 30, a Calgarian who has lived in Britain's capital for three years. "I never want to know the score. I spend all day making sure nobody tells me, and I keep my eyes away from the Web."

The day-late games have been played here since 1984, when a branch of Molson's briefly owned the pub and an enterprising manager arranged to have tapes of the previous night's game sent to London. Though the playoffs are carried on TV in England, the time-zone difference means they usually start at 1 in the morning, two hours after last call.

Since then, modern technology has made it a lot easier to find out the final score, so Maple Leaf pub patrons, determined not to know, spend the playoffs living like monks.

"Most of these people really don't know who's going to win," said McPhail, a native of St. Catharine's, Ont. "Every once in a while, somebody starts talking about the final score. We gently escort them out."

Seven minutes into the game, a loud roar filled the room as Tampa's Ruslan Fedotenko scored. "Get back at it, Iginla. Get your game back," shouted Jeff Czozek, 21, from Toronto.

His friend Thomas Winn, a 28-year-old ex-Vancouverite who designs Web pages in London, quietly shook his head and went to get a beer. "Somebody at work today told me how it's going to end up," he said, very quietly. "I'm just going to keep that smile on my face and pretend I have no idea."

A circle of English patrons, sporting blazers and somewhat bemused expressions, watched carefully from the centre of the bar. "It's a good night of sports, isn't it," said Dennis Finche, 38, "but I don't see how you could get much betting done."

His friend Sarah Marworth, 21, found herself stuck in a pack of oversized Flames' regalia. She watched intently, turning to Czozek with a question.

"What do they mean when they say 'icing'?"

The Canadian was uncharacteristically quiet for a moment. "I'll tell you later," he said.

As Don Cherry took to the screen -- he earned loud cheers from the London crowd, and indeed seemed to blend in very well in a land known for soccer hooligans and loud-coloured dress shirts -- the bar began serving "Canadian fare," which seemed to consist mainly of bacon-covered potatoes and large plates of poutine, which appeared to prove popular with some of the Englishmen in the room.

McPhail looked happily at the full house, one of the few bars in the world that can draw its main clientele with obsolete sporting events.

"This isn't even a great-sized crowd for the playoffs," he said, noting that the Toronto series drew overflow crowds. "I'd say a lot of people found out how it ended up."

If Tampa and Calgary end up battling their way to a full seven games, he said, he might have to break the usual day-late rule and apply to the City of London for a very rare emergency late-opening licence so he can broadcast the game live.

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Guest Can. in UK

I am pretty sure the Maple Leaf gets their tapes for the hockey matches from NASN (North American Sports Network) which take their feeds from ESPN, CBC, etc...

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quote:Originally posted by An Observer

As there doesn't seem anywhere on the internet to watch the match, I was wondering whether anyone could tape it for me. As per usual, I would be willing to pay the cost of the tape and postage to the UK.

If you can, please email me on mausten@virunganet.freeserve.co.uk

Thanks in advance.

If you are in the U.K. do you have a NTSC VCR and TV?

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Ref. yes. I have an NTSC compatiable VCR and TV so it would be no problem playing the tape here if you can get it to me. I won't have to convert it to PAL.

If you send your details to my personal email address, I can arrange to pay you by cheque in advance.

If anyone has contaced the Maple Leaf, let me know if they are showing the match even on a tape delayed basis. I would be interested in going.

cheers, Mark.

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I went to the Maple Leaf for the Ireland- Canada game and there wasn't much attention paid to it. There was the odd fan around.

Henry J Beans (halfway down Kings Road, Chelsea) has North American Sports Network on all the time. There is even the odd CFL match on it.

It would be good to get the Maple Leaf showing the matches. I would even be up for covering a bit of the costs.

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Im recording it with my mythtv box it records in MPEG2 Format. Apparently I can convert it to a Windows Media Player format for viewing. Should be able to shrink it to 500megs or something for downloading on the net. I can't guarantee it because i will be at the game, but providing everything works as its suppose to I will put it up somewhere.

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