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Old 02-10-2008, 11:16 PM    (permalink
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Simple question...

I think the NHL is more exciting to watch in the NBA... especially if it's a close game.
Not enough fighting
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:17 PM    (permalink
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I love hockey, but I can think of some of the reasons why others don't:

1) Not widely played. It's a lot easier to understand the rules of the game when you've dabbled in it as a participant. But you even if you're just playing stick hockey, you need at least a ball and a stick for each person.

2) Tough to watch for newcomers on TV. On standard-definition, you basically have to follow the puck by the flow of the players, which is not an easy thing for new watchers. This is unlike football (big brown ball), basketball (big orange ball), or baseball (not a lot going on to keep track of). HD makes the biggest improvement for hockey games than any other sport.

3) Few national games. Unless you have an NHL team locally or access to Versus, the only games you can watch are on NBC, which doesn't air nearly as many games as ESPN did when they had the rights.

4) Lack of ESPN exposure. Like it or not, ESPN and its family of networks is the destination for the majority of Americans to get their sports fill. And since they don't have any coverage of hockey outside of NHL highlights and the occasional bits and pieces from Barry Melrose, mainstream sports fans are not getting a lot of exposure to the sport.

5) "Who are these guys? This one goes hand in hand with #4. 19 players on each team get a decent amount of playing time in each game, and are involved in the action around the puck. That's a lot of players for Joe Mainstream to decipher, especially when many of them are European. And because ESPN doesn't give any attention to hockey, the mainstream doesn't even learn about the stars. I doubt 5% of Americans can tell you who Sidney Crosby is.

6) Low scoring. I love low scoring games for the goaltending and the intensity. But for the same reason that they never picked up soccer, Americans want action and they want it reflected in the score.

-----

#4 is probably first and foremost, and it's certainly a Catch-22. ESPN stops covering the NHL, so hockey's demand in the mainstream deteriorates. And because it deteriorates, the mainstream decides it wants less and less hockey coverage, so ESPN doesn't give them what they don't want.

I hate it, but it rings pretty true. When TV contracts come up, remember Gary Bettman. You have a lot more to lose in not having ESPN on your side than they do in not having the NHL.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:19 PM    (permalink
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That's one thing that urks me about hockey...the fighting, is so damn unnecessary. Always thought it was stupid that the refs would just stand around, letting these dudes pummel eachother. It really is pointless.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:20 PM    (permalink
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Another thing I dont like...the NHL pimps Sidney too much...you want more fans? Pimp Ovechkin more.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:22 PM    (permalink
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That's one thing that urks me about hockey...the fighting, is so damn unnecessary. Always thought it was stupid that the refs would just stand around, letting these dudes pummel eachother. It really is pointless.
couldnt disagree more. to me, there is a time and place for fighting, but its a part of the game. there is nothing like a team down 2 goals in the 3rd, and a fight breaks out and the losing team rallies back and gains momentum fter a fight.

sometimes it does get stupid, but for the most part, it think it is a great part of the game.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:26 PM    (permalink
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couldnt disagree more. to me, there is a time and place for fighting, but its a part of the game. there is nothing like a team down 2 goals in the 3rd, and a fight breaks out and the losing team rallies back and gains momentum fter a fight.

sometimes it does get stupid, but for the most part, it think it is a great part of the game.
I know the whole momentum thing but, it really is pointless when you think about it. A big hit can do the same for a team as winning a fight can...Do you need to breakout in a fist fight to swing momentum in other sports? I always found it stupid...but, i guess that's just me.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:28 PM    (permalink
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Another thing I dont like...the NHL pimps Sidney too much...you want more fans? Pimp Ovechkin more.
Whys that? Why would you push a Russian who can barely speak english moreso than the best player in the league, who happens to be the youngest captain ever and is living with Mario Lemieux? Crosby is the face of the league and for good reason. He's amazing to see, well spoken, composed, the most marketable player the NHL has ever had (see reebok) and is on the youngest, hottest, most exciting team in hockey.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:28 PM    (permalink
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That's one thing that urks me about hockey...the fighting, is so damn unnecessary. Always thought it was stupid that the refs would just stand around, letting these dudes pummel eachother. It really is pointless.
Totally disagree.

Fighting always has, and always will be a part of the game. You want to know what the crowds think? They get just as loud for a fight as they do for a goal.

Take this scenario. You're playing hockey, your teammate gets his face smashed into the boards and is down on the ice. Do you stand there or go try to beat the **** out of the guy who knocked him into the boards?
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:32 PM    (permalink
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Totally disagree.

Fighting always has, and always will be a part of the game. You want to know what the crowds think? They get just as loud for a fight as they do for a goal.

Take this scenario. You're playing hockey, your teammate gets his face smashed into the boards and is down on the ice. Do you stand there or go try to beat the **** out of the guy who knocked him into the boards?
Kind of barbaric really. You see hard fouls in basketball all the time, chop blocks/late hits, intentionally hit batsman...they dont need to bust out in a legalized fist fight. I really dont get it.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:32 PM    (permalink
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couldnt disagree more. to me, there is a time and place for fighting, but its a part of the game. there is nothing like a team down 2 goals in the 3rd, and a fight breaks out and the losing team rallies back and gains momentum fter a fight.

sometimes it does get stupid, but for the most part, it think it is a great part of the game.
I agree and then push to the degree of a milion percent. Fighting in hockey is part of the game, tradition, etc. Those players respect each other so much when fighting, its great for the team as well. Did you not just see captain Jerome Iginla win a fight to rally his team from behind, score the tieing goal in the dying seconds and than score the shootout winner? Fighting in hockey dates back to the beggining, remember that in the 70s and before guys fought with their sticks, swinging them at each other. In minors when a fight happened the shut off the arena lights and a put a spotlight on the two guys fighting, swinging their sticks, etc.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:33 PM    (permalink
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Kind of barbaric really. You see hard fouls in basketball all the time, chop blocks/late hits, intentionally hit batsman...they dont need to bust out in a legalized fist fight. I really dont get it.
but his point is how it builds you up. it gets you going to go harder and harder. not so much to do something cheap or dirty, but to get you just a little more pumped up.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:35 PM    (permalink
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Kind of barbaric really. You see hard fouls in basketball all the time, chop blocks/late hits, intentionally hit batsman...they dont need to bust out in a legalized fist fight. I really dont get it.
So you just go over to the guy and say "Please don't do that again" or something?
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:40 PM    (permalink
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Whys that? Why would you push a Russian who can barely speak english moreso than the best player in the league, who happens to be the youngest captain ever and is living with Mario Lemieux? Crosby is the face of the league and for good reason. He's amazing to see, well spoken, composed, the most marketable player the NHL has ever had (see reebok) and is on the youngest, hottest, most exciting team in hockey.
People want to see goals...there isnt a better goal scorer in the league than Ovechkin. If i'm a new hocky fan...that's what i want to see. I could care less about some dude who passes as much as Sid does. That's how I see it...when dealing w/ the new hockey fan...this has been my experience.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:43 PM    (permalink
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So you just go over to the guy and say "Please don't do that again" or something?
The same thing happens in other sports and they dont come out swinging. I think it's outdated and really not needed.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:44 PM    (permalink
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http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=3240117

Zednik in stable condition after having surgery on cut neck
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:46 PM    (permalink
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http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=3240117

Zednik in stable condition after having surgery on cut neck
I saw that earlier today...that is freaking crazy.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:49 PM    (permalink
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People want to see goals...there isnt a better goal scorer in the league than Ovechkin. If i'm a new hocky fan...that's what i want to see. I could care less about some dude who passes as much as Sid does. That's how I see it...when dealing w/ the new hockey fan...this has been my experience.
Please dont tell me what people want to see, hockey is my culture and your dead wrong. Let me ask you a question, who would you say is your favorite player on the Senators (boooo) Alfredson, Heatley, Spezza? Where Im from most people would say Mike Fisher, a role playing, grinder, worker. Back to your point about people want goals not passes like Sid. I for one much prefer to see a guy move the puck around like its his playground and make passes through lanes I didnt know existed. Yeah call me crazy but Id rather see someone who engages me with imaginative and briliant plays goal or no goal than a snipe wrister from the slot. Not everyone of Ovecs goals is like the diving circus one.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:52 PM    (permalink
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Your an established hockey fan, that loves hockey. One of the main reasons people dont watch hockey is due to the lack of high scores. I wasnt talking about people that love hockey and watch regularly...I'm talking about people that are new to the sport. They want to see goals. I'm also gearing this toward more the American fan or potential fan, that is.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:54 PM    (permalink
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Your an established hockey fan, that loves hockey. One of the main reasons people dont watch hockey is due to the lack of high scores. I wasnt talking about people that love hockey and watch regularly...I'm talking about people that are new to the sport. They want to see goals. I'm also gearing this toward more the American fan.
That is the same reason most americans hate soccer, not enough scoring....I guess I can understand. But I am a huge hockey fan.
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:00 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Man_Of_Steel View Post
Whys that? Why would you push a Russian who can barely speak english moreso than the best player in the league, who happens to be the youngest captain ever and is living with Mario Lemieux? Crosby is the face of the league and for good reason. He's amazing to see, well spoken, composed, the most marketable player the NHL has ever had (see reebok) and is on the youngest, hottest, most exciting team in hockey.
You have to admit Olvechkin is a better scorer. Sid has more puck skills and passing, but the nod for me (hardly watches hockey) goes to olvechkin. You are a Penguins fan, so that construes you view, but they give Olvechkin 0 push in the media. Sid is amazing, but people love scoring, hence why D-Wade is more popular than a Chris Paul or a Steve Nash even. America loves scoring, so pushing Olvechkin would only help. Sid is more marketable, but 2 sports stars in most cases is better than one. (Jordan is the true exception)
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JBalla is mormon, so naturally he assumes that whenever you get one marriage done, another two or five are in the works.

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Old 02-11-2008, 12:03 AM    (permalink
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That is the same reason most americans hate soccer, not enough scoring....I guess I can understand. But I am a huge hockey fan.
Yeah I agree. Plus its hardly on, and I dont go looking for it. if it had a "night" like a monday night for football when they show a game every week and cycle teams, I would watch it more. I watch the Stanley Cup and I enjoy it, but i need more chances to watch a game than just on a random different day of the week.
This make any sense?
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JBalla is mormon, so naturally he assumes that whenever you get one marriage done, another two or five are in the works.

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Old 02-11-2008, 12:05 AM    (permalink
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Your an established hockey fan, that loves hockey. One of the main reasons people dont watch hockey is due to the lack of high scores. I wasnt talking about people that love hockey and watch regularly...I'm talking about people that are new to the sport. They want to see goals.
Which I disagreed with. To me the reason hockey hasnt caught on in the states is due to a few reasons, none of which being lack of goals which I feel is an easy scapegoat.

1. Lack of culture

In Canada hockey is the culture. In th US its not, football is, basketball is a way of life for many urban raised people. Hockey is not catching on in the states because of titles like "Americas Game". Its fun to discuss sports, the problem is that no one in the States wants to watch something that has little to no importance to their friends and people around them. Thats why there is such differencial between places. For instance Minisota and Buffalo love hockey, generations are raised into and because so many people watch it its a popular discussion and is easily socialble. In place like Texas its the opposite, if you were a kid growing up in Texas after watching a hockey game you might be like wow that was pretty good, however when you went to discuss it with friends or such you would be met with a wall. That stunts the popularity.

Lack of Importance/Exposure

I have yet to come across a Sports Illustarted, ESPN broadcast, etc that consistantly feeds hockey info. In fact a month ago PTI had a 2 minute thing on hockey, I was excited. This ties into number 1. People want to follow a sociable, important sport. The media oulets in the States dont treat it as such and therefore leaves very little breeding ground for hockey enthusiasts.
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:05 AM    (permalink
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The best part of soccer is the shoot out, imo...it's really the only scoring going on. I've tried in the past to like it but, I just never could.
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:08 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by jballa838 View Post
Yeah I agree. Plus its hardly on, and I dont go looking for it. if it had a "night" like a monday night for football when they show a game every week and cycle teams, I would watch it more. I watch the Stanley Cup and I enjoy it, but i need more chances to watch a game than just on a random different day of the week.
This make any sense?
Do you guys in the States get Hockey Night in Canada? Saturday Nights. Even if you dont Saturday is when most games are played in the NHL.
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:12 AM    (permalink
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That is the same reason most americans hate soccer, not enough scoring....I guess I can understand. But I am a huge hockey fan.
at least in hockey theres hitting and fights.
In soccer they just kick the ball around for a long time before theres finally a goal.Theres nothing to get excited about from watching soccer.
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