Online and Ready to Go

September 2008
BHL

It’s a case of out with the old and in with the new. When the puck drops on the 2008/09 British Columbia Hockey League season, visitors to the league’s website will notice lots of changes and some exciting additions.

The new site, which will continue to be located at bchl.bc.ca, is loaded with new features beneficial not only to fans, but to scouts, players and families as well.

“Users will see a much more attractive look on our front page and throughout the site,” David Sales, the BCHL’s Executive Director, says. “The website will be more portal-based so visitors can go deeper into specific areas like News and Features and a Players section.”

“And a lot of it has been designed to take advantage of our new technology and some of the things we’re doing with video and audio.”

One of the most significant additions to the league’s online home will be a TiVo-like video package that can be purchased on a pay-per view basis. Fans who don’t want to miss any of their favourite team’s games can visit the video area on the site and ac­cess full-length broadcasts of every BCHL regular season and playoff contest.

Fans have a few different options when it comes to packages. Individual games cost $6.95 while a series of packages are available for those who want to watch lots of games from their team or from around the league.

“The way that INSINC, whose technol­ogy supports the video capabilities, and Esports desk , which, hosts the site, have worked together to tie all those different things together is exciting,” Sales says.

There are also some dynamic new fea­tures for NCAA and professional scouts who want to keep close tabs on players competing in the league.

The site features a secure password-pro­tected section for those wanting more in-depth information on players. It will house a wealth of resources including player tran­scripts, SAT scores and video archives of every game a potential recruit has played.

Additionally, information such as player’ stats and biographies will be made avail­able to scouts to download so that they can stay completely up-to-date. ‘

“The league has taken the approach that we have a great opportunity to show­case the players that choose to play in the BCHL,” adds Sales.

“The most important thing is that their player profiles and all of their academic information, stats and video archives can be accessed quickly and easily by scouts. That’s the information that they need instant access to.”

For parents whose children are playing away from home, the new video portal on the site should prove to be an exciting new feature. No longer will parents have to wait for a phone call to hear about that night’s game. Instead, they can take advantage of the league’s new video capabilities and catch every game live or archived through the pay-per view service.

“We’ve got lots of kids who aren’t from British Columbia,” Sales says. “Their par­ents rarely get to go to games and watch them play in person, so this provides them with the next best thing.”

The new website and its corresponding features weren’t just a summer construction project for the league, according to Sales. The site has actually been a long time in the making. .

“We’ve really been working towards this point for the last two or three years,” he says.

“We started with developing the scout­ing area – a lot of those tools had to be built. Then we started with the video in all the buildings and expanding the internet broadcasting.”

“Last year we actually put the encoding devices in all of our buildings, which al­lowed us to launch the video broadcasting during last year’s playoffs.”

With all the new gizmos and gadgets set to be up and running by the first week of September, players, scouts and fans will all be able to get connected with the BC Hockey League and its new site by the time the season begins.