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NHL Comes to Playstation as Sony Attempts to Best Microsoft on the Sports Front (Updated)

Sony signs up NHL as the battle for live sports events via gaming consoles continues.

hockey fight

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Hockey fans, hold on to your mullets. Sony and the NHL have teamed up to stream hockey matches for PlayStation users in HD. Anyone with a subscription to NHL Game Center LIVE and a PS3 can access upcoming games, replay highlights of this season’s matches, as well as draw on a library of 500 classic games from the NHL Vault, all through a $9.99 app.

Sony tied up a deal with Major League Baseball earlier this year, and this hookup with the hockey boys is yet another of its forays into the TV market, alongside its collaboration with Google TV. It’s also a good weapon for Sony to wield in its battle with Microsoft, whose XBox 360 hosts ESPN HD sports events, bringing out, as Marc Whitten said in an interview with Fast Company earlier this summer, “more of the interactive experiences for everyone.”

There’s also a form of a carrot for non-NHL Game Center subscribers, as the app allows anyone with a PS3 and a passing interest in pucks to access game highlights, stats, and schedules. Microsoft, with its partnership with ESPN America, only provides NHL games to Xbox fans in Europe with its Center Ice package. But as this rendering plucked off a Microsoft PR server today shows, the console arena may well end up as the preferred arena for sports programs, as people switch off their cable.

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[Image: Flickr user ArtBrom]

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About the author

My writing career has taken me all round the houses over the past decade and a half--from grumpy teens and hungover rock bands in the U.K., where I was born, via celebrity interviews, health, tech and fashion in Madrid and Paris, before returning to London, where I now live. For the past five years I've been writing about technology and innovation for U.S

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