Blackhawks get an NHL-high 17 national TV appearances next season

The Hawks remain a popular scheduling choice for NBC in the 2017-18 season.

The Chicago Blackhawks will once again be the NHL’s most popular team on NBC and NBCSN for the 2017-18 season. The Hawks get 17 appearances on national television in the United States, starting with a road matchup on Oct. 10 against the Montreal Canadiens.

NBC announced its full schedule of national NHL broadcasts for next season on Monday, and the Blackhawks keep their place as a key part of the network’s offerings. The Blackhawks are among the most popular teams in the NHL, and NBC never shies away from that when it’s time to decide who gets the extra limelight.

Here’s the complete Blackhawks national TV schedule:

The vast majority of the games are on NBCSN, with the exception of a March 11 home game against the Boston Bruins that’ll be on NBC. Part of why you never see NHL games on NBC until later in the season is the presence of the NFL, which provides the network its most popular program, Sunday Night Football.

That means hockey largely gets bumped to NBCSN, which is luckily carried by the vast majority of cable and satellite TV packages. (This is not the same case with NHL Network, which isn’t carried by my standard Comcast cable package, for example.)

The Hawks’ national games cover a variety of opponents, including the Blues (three times), Rangers (two times), Predators (two times), Lightning (two times), Capitals, Canadiens, Flyers, Maple Leafs, Red Wings, Sharks, and Bruins.