Social Media & the NHL Trading Deadline

NHL Trade Deadline day is one of those days that Canadian hockey fans circle on the calendar. On February 28, hockey fans tuned in everywhere, by television, radio and especially by the internet and mobile.

For those who don’t know, the NHL trading deadline is when teams try to improve their roster for the upcoming playoffs, or a chance to unload those expensive players before they become free agents at the end of the year.

Reporters would spend their day working their contacts by phone and email looking for that one big trade scoop. These days however, it’s not uncommon to hear that a trade was confirmed by the player through his Twitter account. Or a fake trade announced through a player’s fake Twitter account.

Here’s a quick look at how the NHL Trade Deadline day was impressively handled through three prominent media outlets.

Toronto Maple Leafs: Leafspace Live
The team that did the least happened had one of the best setups of all the outlets, including:

- A live feed of LeafsTV Live Boardroom feed where we saw little if anything happen

- CoverItLive chat featuring user posts, video clips, images and polls.

- Three columns of Twitter streams with contributions by the Hockey media, official feeds from other NHL teams and tweets featuring the #mapleleafs hashtag in the third.

- Mentions from Facebook were also being displayed

CBC Sports Trade Deadline

- Live feed from CBC Sports

- Twitter integration

- Clips from Hockey Night Radio on Sirius

- CoverItLive chat stream featuring polls, video clips and images

- A poll where users could evaluate each trade

TSN TradeCentre
TSN went so far to brand their presence as TradeCentre on a splash page on their site, including:

- TradeCentre Live video feed

- iPad and iPhone apps with special TradeCentre functionality

- Live Blog

- TSN Tweetbox

- Facebook Live Chat

- Trade Tracker

The Score featured a basic Trade Tracker with links to PuckDaddy radio and Facebook discussion.

The Toronto Star, National Post and The Globe and Mail featured trade trackers as well frequently updated news and live blogs.

It’s always interesting to watch what used to be considered fringe tools now taking their place in  news gathering and reporting.