Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Stupid NHL Sports

from Terry Frei, special to ESPN,

Martha Burk, the grandstanding chairwoman of the National Council of Women's Organizations, missed an opportunity to skewer the NHL's new marketing campaign on sound grounds. Ridiculously, she emphasized the lame women-as-sex-objects lament. Sure, there's titillation and implied sexuality in the spots, but if Martha wants to grouse about that, then she probably should start calling news conferences on the hour to lambaste, point-by-point, the similar approaches of roughly 78.2 percent of all television commercials and darned near every prime-time show on the Fox, WB and UPN networks. This is what she could have said: The spots are stupid.

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Fox Sports Net Ratings Up

via Media Week,

Opening night ratings in eight NHL markets where Fox Sports Net (FSN) televises games were all up over opening night 2003 (the league was dark last season), ranging from gains of 3 percent to 257 percent. The Detroit Red Wings telecast on FSN-Detroit produced an 8.1 rating, up 3 percent from the 7.9 the opening night telecast produced in 2003. The St. Louis Blues telecast was up 24 percent to a 2.1; Columbus Blue jackets, up 69 percent to a 2.2; Boston Bruins, up 107 percent to a 2.9; Pittsburgh Penguins, up 122 percent to a 7.1; Pheonix Coyotes, up 140 percent to a 1.2; San Jose Sharks, up 200 percent to a 1.5; and Tampa Bay Lightning, up 257 percent to a 2.5.
thanks to reader kdog for the heads up. As many people know, especially in the Detori makret, the Wings are a huge draw for Fox Sports. The question that keeps getting asked, yet FSD refuses to answer, why no high definition for the Detroit market?

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Luongo Gets Better With Equipment & Rule Changes

from Darren Eliot of NHL.com

, Not that Roberto Luongo needed much help, but is it possible that the reductions in size to the goaltending equipment and the introduction of the "No Handle" zones actually benefit the Florida Panthers' star 'keeper? As daunting as that prospect is for NHL shooters, it might be true.

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The Comeback

from the Star-Telegram,

Before the NHL reinvented itself, fans often could leave at the second intermission with the game's outcome all but decided. Simply put, the team that was winning entering the third period was usually going to win -- so why not beat the traffic? Those who leave early this season, however, might turn on the car radio and wish they had stayed. Wednesday night's season opener, in which the Stars came back from a 4-0 deficit after one period to beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-4, was evidence of how much the league's new rules limit a team's ability to protect a lead.

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Raining Rats Ten Years Ago

from the Sun-Sentinel,

Rats. They were rubber and plastic, windup and squeaky. Big and small, gray, black and pink. Some were store-bought cheap ... some were intricately painted in full Panther uniform, plastic rats that had been tweaked. Works of Rart ... and every night they cascaded to the ice at the Miami Arena. You must remember. First one, then a dozen, then a hundred, then a thousand. Some nights they showered the ice in waves like locust. Yet it seemed you could see each one as it hit the ice, like every snowflake in a blizzard.
read on

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The NHL Academy

Visit The NHL Academy, you may learn something.

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Opening Night Ratings

Hockey's return to the ice for its first opening night in two years was a success for OLN, though it rated lower than ESPN's opening night in 2003. And regional sports networks showed strong ratings in hockey's return. OLN's inaugural NHL telecast included four solid hours of hockey in primetime, including the New York Rangers-Philadelphia Flyers faceoff from Philadelphia. Nielsen Media Research said the game averaged a 0.42 household rating and 353,000 viewers, much better than season-to-date averages and comparisons with last year. It fell short of ESPN's opening-night national telecast of three games in October 2003, which averaged a 0.54 rating and 476,000 households. But ESPN2 has more distribution than Comcast, which is available in only about 64 million homes nationwide compared with ESPN's 88 million. update 8:51am, Huge Ratings For TSN from Slam via the Ottawa Sun,

If you're thinking Canadians seemed more wound up than usual about opening night in the NHL ... well, let's just say nobody knows that better than the folks at TSN. Wednesday's season-opening doubleheader shattered all records for NHL viewership on the network, and rated as one of the most-watched nights in TSN's 21-year history. "It exceeded our wildest expectations," said an incredulous TSN president Phil King. "Hockey is back in a huge way, that's for sure. It was just unbelievable." A few numbers for your consideration. The Senators-Leafs early game, combined with a regional Flames-Wild telecast in Alberta, pulled in 2.1 million viewers. It peaked at 2.7 million during the overtime and shootout won by the Sens.

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Flyers Want It Live, Not The DVD

from Phillyburbs,

Watching a Bruce Springsteen concert on television is fun, but there's nothing like being there live. That's kind of the way Mike Rathje feels about the NHL's presentation of its new rules. The Flyers defenseman said watching a league-produced video of what will and won't be called was nice. But he would prefer if a guy like referee Kerry Fraser (who lives in the Voorhees area) would show up at the Skate Zone one morning and give some personal instruction.

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Hey, Hey Hockeytown

The official website of the Detroit Red Wings needs to realize the NHL season has started. Why you ask? As I pointed out a week ago, they still maintain NHL games are being televised on ABC, ESPN & ESPN2! The Wings website has always lacked the most current NHL news, a perfect example is durng the NHL Draft, when all other team websites were updating as the picks were being made, the Wings still had a pre-draft story up on their site; 24 hours after the draft had taken place. Hmm, can we take a look at the Wings Entry Draft History? Geez, it looks like the 2005 Draft hasn't even taken place! Well at least they are trying to help out the bars and restaraunts around the Joe. Under the 'Interactive' menu on their site there it is 'Local food and Entertaiment, so what do you think is listed. One venue, the Hockeytown Cafe, which happens to be owned by the Ilitch Family. Is that the only place in the area? Not by my calculations, there are at least 15 such establishments, all closer to the JLA than Hockeytown is. Hey, Hey Hockeytown, this is embarrasing! Oh yes, it almost slipped my mind, but I did try to email the Wings through the website and received the following message: Your message with Subject: Fan Comments could not be delivered to the following recipients: DRWPublicRelations@hockeytown.com Please do not resend your original message. Delivery attempts will continue to be made for 2 day(s). They may want to try to fix that too!

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Why Not A Visor

from the Toronto Sun,

The NHL says it is in favour of implementing a rule -- in conjunction with its close friends at the NHL Players' Association -- that would mandate eye protection in the league. The league has said that before and refused to implement it without agreement. The matter actually came up in the recent collective bargaining talks. The NHLPA didn't object to mandatory eye protection -- only a majority of its members did. So what did Maple Leafs rookie Carlo Colaiacovo do on Tuesday? He decided he no longer needed to play with a visor, which may explain why the Leafs chose to send him back to the Marlies yesterday. Never mind his playing ability, it may be his ability to think that they have to be concerned about. When asked about what affect the Sundin injury would have on him, Colaiacovo said: "Probably won't influence me."

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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