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Local Broadcast Rankings

from Jonathan Willis of The Athletic,

It started off with the survey. For nearly a month, hockey writers across The Athletic shared the link and asked their readers to share their opinions on their local broadcast teams and the best and worst elsewhere. Thousands of you did, with all of you rating your local broadcast on a scale of very poor to very good, and many of you obligingly chiming in on teams from other markets.

Once the votes were in, the opinions of the fans and non-fans had to be balanced. Local fans are the intended audience of any regional broadcast and watch theirs far more regularly than out-of-towners. Out-of-market fans, on the other hand, tended to be far more objective and equally willing to call out good and bad....

23. Detroit Red Wings

The results: We’ve seen a few markets (Anaheim, Florida) where the locals like the product a lot more than national viewers do, but Detroit takes the cake. FSD’s Red Wings telecast ranks 16 spots higher on the local scale than the non-local scale. No other broadcast has a greater discrepancy between local love and out-of-market disdain.

That’s a good indication of a competent but biased broadcast and seems to be something of which even Red Wings fans who love it are aware.

“Ken Daniels’s play-by-play is excellent, and Mickey Redmond/Chris Osgood on colour is wonderful fan service,” said one Detroit fan who gave FSD the highest possible score.

“Ken Daniels is the best in the business,” said another local with a “very good” vote. “Mickey has learned to tame some of his homerism, but he does still struggle with it, and if they don’t turn it around soon, he might retire because I don’t know how much of this rebuild he can take.”

more ($$$) on the Wings plus all the other teams...

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d ca's avatar

1) Detroit’s decline can also be traced to HNIC going away from regional broadcasts. Given the choice between FSD and CBC’s broadcast, I don’t think a single knowledgeable fan were watching FSD instead of CBC-Windsor on a Saturday night before it became an extension of the Leafs organization.

2) Part of the reason why Mickey Redmond has gotten worse in terms of bias and homerisms is because of Ken Daniels. I am not saying Daniels is bad (almost all HNIC alums aren’t—btw I said almost), just speaking stylistically.

Daniels is the play-by-play guy and that’s all he does. He describes the play live like he’s doing a radio broadcast—that’s my problem with the broadcast.  He doesn’t tell you what to expect or how to read a defense (like others think Tony Romo in football) or where the play is going (the team has been working on the PP and is trying to get the defense to initiate shots from the point or the coaches tell me X).

Redmond has taken the cue off that and is over-killing the color side of the broadcast. Trying to provide anecdotal stories that keep the viewer entertained—-because as of the last few years watching the game won’t for Wings fans (especially the ones that grew up watching HOF teams).

Osgood is the John Keating intern and Keating was the wannabe copy of Ray Lane that FSD found would be better by splitting pre- and post- games rather than between periods.  Essentially Ray Lane’s job became 3 jobs once FSD took over (from PASS that took over from WKBD channel 50).

Trevor Thompson is the guy that should be moving onto the national scene (like Dave Strader).  It’s obvious the players respect what he does and know he won’t put them on the spot to answer for someone else’s mistakes. He also can interact with managers and other media guys too. Need an interview at the bench in pre-game: go to him. Need it during intermission: go to him. Need to film a filler in pre-game: have him go on the ice and get schooled by Datsyuk.

I don’t have the paid subscription to read, but if they didn’t come to that same conclusions they missed out. I suspect that is why the difference are so high (as other regions don’t do this and weren’t brought up with such good options HNIC or Strader, Redmond, and Ray Lane.

Posted by d ca on 04/01/20 at 04:32 PM ET

d ca's avatar

Consider this picture to see just how long Redmond has been the color analyst. Just look at the black and white TV monitor they used.

Computer Hope

Posted by d ca on 04/01/20 at 04:39 PM ET


The overall conclusions of the article are pretty sound. FSD fatigue is real (the endless LTL banter, and Ken Daniels with a cold can be grating despite his obvious skills) and I’ll often watch the opponents’ feeds as a result. My minor ordinal quibbles would have the Islanders, Capitals, and Devils lower on account of their color guys, and LAK and CBJ higher (I thought CBJ was great when they had Rimer and Engblom). Dallas is top-notch IMO.

Posted by Unhealthy Scratch from The Land of Potential Bottom Six Skill on 04/02/20 at 01:03 PM ET

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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com