By Dan Scifo
From the Point contributor
Pierre McGuire didn’t even have to interview for the job.
The “Inside-the-Glass” analyst for the NHL on NBC was initially approached prior to the 2004-05 NHL lockout by NBC executive producer Sam Flood, who pitched the groundbreaking idea that would put McGuire between the benches, giving fans and viewers a revolutionary glimpse inside the game.
And just like that, history was made.
McGuire was recently in Pittsburgh to help promote another innovation in hockey viewing, joining beloved Penguins’ historian Bob Grove, who is also the current Vice President of Public Relations for Comcast Cable.
The two helped showcase Comcast’s new X1 Sports app for hockey, introducing the app and displaying features, as McGuire broke down the Stanley Cup Final between the Penguins and Sharks, while also recounting stores from his time as an assistant coach with Pittsburgh during the 1991 and ’92 seasons.
The X1 Sports app, one of the most in-depth television sports companion tools in the country, provides pre-game matchups, live in-game statistics and full post-game analysis all on the same screen as the game itself at no additional charge.
A series of real-time statistics and visualizations are presented along the right-hand side of the screen, providing scores and in-game analysis and data for not only NHL games, but also NFL, MLB, NBA, NASCAR, soccer, and college football and basketball.
The hockey app features a visual display of the last five games played by each team, regular-season standings and statistics like goals, goals against, shots, faceoff percentage and power-play success.
There are also individual statistics, including league ranking for goals, points, games played, plus-minus, game-winning goals and shots on goal. Additional biographical player information, including height, weight, birthdate and draft history is also included.
In-game statistics feature game leaders in goals, assists, shots, hits and time on ice. There is a shot history for each team, complete with shot location and attempted shots in addition to a live listing of events on ice like goals, shot blocks and penalties.
Post-game statistics include a scoring summary by period, goal recap, updated team records, standings and shot history.
They are all statistics McGuire meticulously combs through in order to prepare for a broadcast.
McGuire won two Stanley Cups with the Penguins and served as coach of the Hartford Whalers and an assistant in Ottawa before transitioning to the broadcast booth.
Prior to working at NBC, McGuire was the lead analyst for TSN Canada’s national NHL broadcasts. He has provided in-depth coverage of the IIHF World Junior Championship, NHL Entry Draft and “Inside the Glass” analysis for NBC at the previous three Winter Olympics.
In 2013, McGuire, one of the most passionate and knowledgeable personalities, won a Sports Emmy Award for Outstanding Sports Personality, Sports Reporter.
All for his innovative work between the benches.