Posted in Canadiens, Media, TV

Rogers offers special deal for rest of Canada to watch RDS Canadiens regional games online

As anger continues to build among Toronto and other western Canadian Habs fans that they will no longer be able to watch all 82 regular-season games on RDS, Rogers announced today a special deal that might alleviate that somewhat.

NHL GameCentre Live, the NHL streaming service that allows viewers to watch out-of-region games, will cost $200 for the season this year ($180 if you subscribe by Oct. 13). That’s a pretty steep price for people who were used to either having RDS as part of their basic package or paying a buck or two a month at most.

But Rogers is offering a separate deal that contains just the RDS regional games — 60 Canadiens games and 54 Ottawa Senators games — for $60 for the season. That might be enough for the hard-core fans to accept. (Note that this is for fans outside the Canadiens and Senators market, which is all of Quebec, all of Atlantic Canada and the part of Ontario that’s east of Belleville and Pembroke.)

No more blackouts*

On top of that, national games and in-region games, which were formally blacked out on GameCentre to protect the rights of national and regional broadcasters, will no longer be blacked out. So people who buy a subscription won’t have to switch between various media and websites.

The trade-off to that is that these will be available on an authenticated basis, meaning you need a TV subscription to Sportsnet (English) or TVA Sports (French) to access these national or in-region games on GameCentre, and you need your TV provider to participate in the Rogers program. The TVA access for national games in French probably won’t be ready until January because of technical issues.

Rogers confirms that the games that are not available in a certain region on TV will not require authentication to watch on GameCentre.

Rogers says there will still be some blackouts for in-region games whose rights are owned by “another company” (i.e. TSN). So Ottawa Senators regional games in eastern Canada and Winnipeg Jets games in Manitoba and Saskatchewan won’t be available on this service, nor will those Toronto Maple Leafs regional games that air on TSN4 be available in most of Ontario. You have to watch those on TSN.

Similarly, regional Habs and Senators games in French won’t be available in eastern Canada because RDS holds the rights to them.

And more

Other deals for NHL GameCentre Live include:

  • Free subscriptions for Rogers Internet and Rogers Wireless (data) subscribers until Dec. 31. Half-season passes will be $130 for those who want to subscribe after that.
  • More than 800 archived games going back to 1960.
  • A new NHL mobile app coming in October to watch the games on smartphones and tablets.
  • Where multiple feeds are available, such as English/French or Canada/U.S., GameCentre Live provides both as options.

Rogers has promised more GameCentre announcements in the coming weeks. There may also be announcements relating to NHL Centre Ice, the TV-based service for watching out-of-market games.

119 thoughts on “Rogers offers special deal for rest of Canada to watch RDS Canadiens regional games online

        1. Fagstein Post author

          you have to be a subscriber to to rogers to get it

          No you don’t. It’s free to Rogers customers until the end of the year, but anyone can buy it.

          Reply
  1. Denise

    I think its a disgrace by Rogers communication . We had broadcast in FRENCH on RDS of montreal canadiens and others in the past and suddenly ROGERS decides to cut us off. I think its a discrimination towards the francophone. I hope somebody intelligent enough to realize the big Mistake they have created. We had it with our package and now we have to pay more …..what is this all about oh yeah it’s all about money and the hell with the fan. Je crois que vous avez du chemin a faire pour vous faire pardonner de cette gaffe inutile.

    Reply
  2. Steve

    It’s unconscionable that Rogers would black out Habs games to northern Ontarip just to gouge more money out of the people

    Reply
  3. Paul

    Thanks Rogers. I’ve paid for years to get the Canadiens games on RDS, since I could not get a English
    broadcaster out West here in Alberta. Your new big wig in charge was howling at the start of the season how Sportsnet was going to give more access to our favorite teams to watch across Canada. The only thing you
    are offering is to have to pay $200.00 more and not even sure if I can get the Habs on Shaw Cable here in
    Calgary.
    The only good thing is we don’t have to watch the Leafs because of regional blackout. Just wish they would do that also on Saturday (HNIC). I very happy you think of the fan and not the shareholders.
    Remember every game is Hockey Day in Canada, not just on Regional blackout schedule.
    From a PR position, do something to please the fans.
    I would say Thank you, but it on regional blackout.

    Reply
  4. Bonnie Thibodeau

    Thank God every once in a while Channel 8 or City will show a complete Montreal Canadien Game in English. This doesn’t help my husband who would like to here is team play in his own language here in Calgary. All games on RDS are blacked out here. I am keeping RDS here in my home in Calgary. I will not be bullied by Rodgers.

    Reply
  5. Denis

    The only way to make Rogers and NHL to do something is for a large majority of us not buy Game Centre live, Centre ice and cancel subscription to RDS and NHL channel. I know that would mean not watching our habs, but they only understand $$$$ That’s where we need to hit them.

    Reply

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