Best Canadian TV shows of the past and present for hockey fans

You might have heard that hockey is pretty popular in Canada; it’s the only sport that will make any Canadian sit up and take notice no matter what’s going on.

With this in mind, it is hardly a surprise that there have been plenty of TV shows based solely on the sport itself or at least featuring some element of the game.

Here are some shows of past and present which are sure to either put a smile on your face or, at the very least, make you think more deeply about the game.

Rent-a-Goalie
This show has to have one of the strangest premises ever conceived, as the protagonist dubiously named “Cake” runs a business that centres around providing local hockey teams with much-needed goalies.

We’re not sure if this was someone’s idea of what sports agenting could have been, but no matter, it managed to run for 26 episodes and is something of a cult classic, revered for how bad it was more than anything else.

The show did inspire an app, which still runs to this day, allowing amateur teams to find the goalie of their dreams, or nightmares.

Hockey is a way of life in many parts of Canada.

Letterkenny
While Rent-a-Goalie is funny because of how bad it is, Letterkenny is just hilarious, full stop.

The connection to hockey is that the show’s protagonists have something of a love-hate relationship with the hockey players in their local area.

This is about as far away from high-stakes NHL odds and picks as you can possibly get, as life unfolds in the barren winter wasteland.

Hockey Wives
The world has moved on somewhat from a time when reality shows about sportsmen’s wives were fashionable.

That said, Hockey Wives was pretty entertaining throughout its three-season spree. The show’s mainstay was Maripier Morin who only needed three seasons to decide that the life of a hockey player’s wife wasn’t for her, divorcing Brandon Prust soon after the show ended.

The particularly interesting thing about this show was that it followed the lives of hockey players’ wives not just in Canada but around the world, giving some fascinating cultural context to the on-screen shenanigans and dramas.

If you love hockey, then you should enjoy some aspect of all of these shows.

Hockey: A People’s History
If you are the sort of viewer who prefers a factual documentary over a comedy, or far-fetched reality show, then Hockey: A People’s History is perfect for you.

The show chronicles just why hockey is so important to the nation of Canada and will have you harking back to some of its episodes the next time you get in a heartfelt hockey conversion with fellow NHL fans at the local sports bar.

South Park
This long running animated series was more famous for ripping on Canada than saying anything meaningful about the country’s beloved sport.

However, all that changed in episode 153, when Stan was forced to become the coach of a hockey team in order to get his stolen bicycle back. The premise is almost as bad as Rent-a-Goalie’s, but the difference here is that South Park is genuinely amusing.

Power Play
Often the best stories in sport have nothing to with athletic competition and everything to do with the boardroom politics and backstabbing that goes on behind closed doors.

Power Play delved straight into that shady world, as a sports agent is thrust into becoming the general manager of an NHL franchise, battling to keep it afloat as he comes under attack from all sides. If you thought managing a team in the big leagues was easy, this show that aired for just two seasons will make you think again.

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4 thoughts on “Best Canadian TV shows of the past and present for hockey fans”

  1. My personal favourite was MVP which was not on this list. I really liked that show and I wish it had lasted beyond a season.

    1. I thought I was the only one who remembered that CBC show in 2008! MVP: The Secret Lives of Hockey Wives. Yeah it sucked CBC cancelled 3 shows I was following that winter and that was one of them.

  2. The first incarnation of He Shoots, He Scores aired in English back in the 80s. There have been other seasons/next generation reboots in French.

  3. There was also a CBC show called “The Tournament” I believe. Might have been about minor hockey. Only ever saw the commercials. Same with “Dooley Gardens”, starring Mary Walsh. I’ve often wondered why there hasn’t been more fictional dramas/comedies based on Canadians love of sports…. has everything been as bad as CBC’s attempt to make a TV series off “Men With Brooms”?

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