Once again a champion will be crowned in Tampa on ESPN2.
ESPN picked up Wednesday the Warriors-Grizzlies game that is slated to start at the same time as the 2016 Frozen Four national championship at Amalie Arena. As a result, the title game will be bumped from ESPN to ESPN2.
As the Golden State Warriors continue to pursue a record-setting regular season (69-9 as of April 6), ESPN has added the Warriors vs. Memphis Grizzlies game on Saturday, April 9, at 8 p.m. ET to its schedule. The telecast is part of a significant night of live event programming across ESPN platforms.
In addition to both NBA games on Saturday night, ESPN will also televise the 2016 Frozen Four National Championship, now airing on ESPN2. John Buccigross and Barry Melrose will call the action, with Quint Kessenich reporting from between the benches and Victoria Arlen providing features on the participating teams and players.
It's disappointing to see the biggest game of the season - and normally the only hockey game of the year on the mothership channel - be bumped to the Deuce. Every championship game since the 2004-05 lockout with the exception of 2012 (also in Tampa and also on ESPN2) has been on main ESPN.
Obviously basketball is going to draw eyeballs over the niche nature of college hockey although it should be stated the ratings for this year's opening weekend were down from 2015.
Thursday's national semifinals were already scheduled to be played on ESPN2.
Boston College, Quinnipiac, North Dakota and Denver are the four remaining teams playing for the 2016 NCAA championship.