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Live Mobile Streaming of NHL Games Back on BlackBerry

Bruins vs. Lightning
Brian Babineau/NHL via Getty Images

After taking a breather last year, the pro hockey league has renewed its North American deal with the struggling Canadian smartphone maker to include the GameCenter App.

TORONTO – Blackberry may be looking to newly-installed creative director Alicia Keys to help reel back in international customers.

But the struggling smartphone maker is eyeing something closer to home to win back hockey-mad Canadians increasingly enamored with Apple and Samsung devices: mobile access to live out-of-market NHL games.

BlackBerry on Thursday inked a deal with the pro hockey league to get its NHL GameCenter App back onto the newly-launched BlackBerry 10 platform.

"Partnering with an industry leader like BlackBerry for the launch of the new BlackBerry 10 and making NHL GameCenter available to more fans is a great way to continue to super-serve our loyal and passionate fan base,” said Keith Wachtel, senior vp of integrated sales at the NHL, which these days is wooing chastened fans after its recent labor dispute.

The new agreement includes BlackBerry sponsoring the NHL Trade Deadline Day coverage on April 3.

The NHL anticipates GameCenter app users will mostly get the latest scores and team and player stats.

But NHL GameCenter, previously available on BlackBerry devices, wasn't available last year.

That was while NHL games could still be streamed live on the iPhone and Android smartphone and tablet platforms.

The hockey league and BlackBerry have now renewed their North American partnership, but only on the BlackBerry 10 platform and future updates.