Former NHL tough guys, figure skaters gear up for Battle of the Blades Sunday

TORONTO – NHL tough guys Tie Domi and Bob Probert will have to float like butterflies and forget old habits of stinging like bees Sunday night.

The two are among the NHL notables who will team up with former figure skaters like Isabelle Brasseur and Barbara Underhill in the premiere of the CBC reality series “Battle of the Blades.” Sunday’s is the first of seven weekly shows. Each week, teams comprised of a female figure skater and a former NHL player must master a dance routine and win enough votes from a television audience to avoid elimination.

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The show’s choreographer said recently that while the NHLers are steady on their feet, switching to figure skate blades proved to be a challenge for them.

And if the NHLers hoped to skate free of the rough and tumble criticism of hockey pundits, they’re out of luck – one of the celebrity judges is Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry.