Sunday night when the Carolina Hurricanes are in Montreal to take on the Canadiens, people will be able to enjoy the broadcast in a different way.
It’ll be the first time in history that an NHL game will be televised in Plains Cree.
“The whole concept of our language being at a venue where it’s going to be worldwide, the Montreal Canadiens and the Carolina Hurricanes hockey game in Cree, with that world view that it comes with, that is completely off the hook,” said one of the game’s studio hosts, Earl Wood.
Wood, along with Jason Chamakeese, will host the game from APTN’s headquarters in Winnipeg. Saskatchewan broadcaster Clarence Iron will do the play-by-play.
All of the production, including play-by-play of the game is being done from APTN’s Winnipeg studios.
“I’d never ever have imagined that I’d be sitting in a studio being a part of something like that especially a hockey game that’s being broadcast in my traditional language,” said Chamakeese.
APTN will use Sportsnet’s production capabilities to air the program featuring Cree commentary and analysis.
Sportsnet vice president Rob Corte called it a “momentous broadcast.”
“We are truly honoured to have the opportunity to work with APTN to celebrate Canada’s Indigenous communities and the shared passion for hockey that unites us all,” Corte said in a news release.
Chamakeese said it’s a huge step for Indigenous languages across the board.
“It’s a significant moment that we are creating tomorrow to bring a Canadian iconic sport into peoples living rooms in an indigenous language is just phenomenal.”
-With files from the Canadian Press