Friday, April 17, 2009

NHL: Where Art Thou?

The NHL has all but disappeared.

The majority of the games are buried away on cable networks such as Versus. ESPN shows maybe three minutes of highlights in an hour broadcast ... and we are in the PLAYOFFS. The Stanley Cup PLAYOFFS.

I remember having the discussion with my father about our favorite postseasons in sports. March Madness was at the top. NFL playoffs were up there with the NBA playoffs, but Lord Stanley Cup's playoffs was in the argument. (OMG HAYDEN)

Intensity, aggression, finesse, excitement. The NHL playoffs had it all. It was most definitely in my top-4 as far as postseasons go. However, since the NHL took a year off, the league has taken a nose dive that rivals that of post-JT-breakup depressed Britney Spears.

In 2007, game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Ottawa Senators posted a 1.1 Nielsen rating, an all-time low for the NHL.

Heck, Game 5, always a crucial game, was preempted by the Preakness prerace coverage. PRERACE coverage of a HORSE RACE. I know the Triple Crown is great stuff, but PRERACE coverage takes precedence over a huge finals hockey game?


Can the NHL, after it's Britney-eque crash, make the naked-music video Britney comeback?

It will need the help of ESPN. You can try to deny it, but ESPN has come as close to a monopoly of sports as you can. They have no stake in the NHL right now. That needs to change or the Gary Bettman train will continue up to 88 MPH and blow up in Clayton Ravine.

We need the NHL.

I sat down with my friend last summer and could still name over 20 players from the Dallas Stars Stanley Cup Champion team. Reminiscing about those times ... its depressing to think that I can't name 5 players on the team now. It's not because I don't want to be a fan, it's because I don't have the means to be a fan. I can't afford purchasing the sports package that includes Versus. I can't watch many highlights of my team because they don't show up on Sportscenter. Right now... you have to work to be an NHL fan. With lazy America, that means the NHL will fail.

So please ESPN, it's in your hands to throw the NHL on your back, and carry them back to significance.

May Lord Stanley live on.

Stay classy,


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