THIS STORY HAS BEEN UPDATED: Sportsnet
magazine doesn't launch until September 29, but Rogers is selling subscriptions online ($29 per year) through its magazine service website
– where the company has also posted three covers of the new publication.
While the site itself doesn't say if the covers are merely mock-ups or if one has been decided on for the first issue, a spokesperson for Rogers has since confirmed they are mock-ups. The covers posted on the site point to stories about the Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Bautista, MMA's Randy Couture as well as a guide to stadium food.
Meanwhile, during a PBAA convention in Toronto Aug. 17, newly named Sportsnet
publisher and editor-in-chief Steve Maich said Sportsnet will fill a hole left by Sports Illustrated
which "does not focus on hockey ... Canadians are passionate about hockey".
Of the three covers on the website, the only apparent reference to hockey is a story with a teaser that reads, "The sad decline of hockey in Canada? Seriously".
Sportsnet magazine can also be ordered directly at sportsnet.ca/magazine
where readers are promised four free issues along with the $29 annual subscription. Three covers are also posted on this site, including one with a hockey theme.
Outgoing Rogers Publishing president Brian Segal said at the convention that "a sports magazine as part of our sports franchise is the right move" and that Rogers is investing in 35 editorial staff for the new magazine. "This is not a small investment," said Segal.