Kukla's Korner Hockey
from William Houston of the Globe and Mail,
A few days ago, TSN hockey analyst Bob McKenzie called the NHL all-star weekend a “white elephant” in the sense that it’s dull, cumbersome and, as a spectacle, a liability more than an asset.
McKenzie might have tempered his comment if TSN were airing the all-star events, but he is right. The game is a pitiful representation of hockey, a no-contact snoozer that leaves real fans cold.
Hockey Night in Canada’s Ron MacLean has suggested replacing all-star weekend with an annual hockey festival with activities that perhaps wouldn’t even include an all-star game. Anything would be better than the existing format.
Sportscentre counts down the most creative to the downright best shootout goals from the first half of the season.
From Jennifer Leggio at ZD Net,
Over the last year or so, the NHL has been working diligently to roll out a three-phase digital media program to serve its estimated 20 million avid fans in North America — 13 million in the U.S. and 7 million in Canada. The primary objectives were to personalize content for avid fans, make that content more interactive, and create a more social presence on its NHL site and sub-sites.
“We know a few things about our fans that feed our strategy as a media business, but also support our investments in digital media,” [Michael] DiLorenzo said. “On average, about 50 percent of fans are displaced — meaning they live in a different geographic area than their favorite teams. Inherently they have an access constraint, whether it be missing the games on TV or not being able to buy their team-branded goods at a local sporting goods store.”
What DiLorenzo realized is that the combination of an access constraint and a technically sophisticated audience creates opportunity — for both the league and for the fans. Recognizing that the NHL has “modest” national television distribution (the league owns all of its TV rights) it has the ability to take video online in a way that other leagues cannot.
read on for a very detailed look at the NHL’s digital media initiatives
from Kevin of BfloBlog,
Via press release, the Sabres confirmed what their schedule has shown for some time - that the next four Sabres games will not be televised.
“Out of our 82-game schedule, the MSG Network has broadcast rights to 70, and the Versus Network has rights to a maximum of eight,” said Larry Quinn, Buffalo’s minority owner/managing partner. “As such, we needed to select four games to be radio only. We chose these west coast games due to their late starts.”
Very clever, LQ. It’s MSG’s fault! But you were the one who negotiated the deal with MSG in the first place. You negotiated away the four road games. No city in America draws higher ratings for hockey than Buffalo, but we surely wouldn’t stay up past 10:00 to watch our team, right?
(I’m sure it has nothing to do with cost though…)
But not to fear, we at least get them on the radio, right?
NEW YORK, NY - Beginning Thursday, Jan. 22, through Sunday, Jan. 25, NHL Network will be on location at the 2009 NHL All-Star Celebration in Montreal to provide viewers with 15 hours of live HD* coverage from the star-studded event. NHL Network’s Brian Duff and Gary Green and contributors Dave Strader and Joe Micheletti will bring viewers inside the festivities with interviews featuring NHL players and coaches, live broadcasts from the All-Star practices and expert analysis.
But Pierre has a good excuse.
from Puck The Media,
The NHL On NBC’s regular “Game of the Week” timeslot debut was even with last year’s. The Rangers/Penguins game scored a 1.1/3 overnight, #2 in non-football programming that week (behind college hoops on ABC).
The matching game from last year, Rangers/Bruins on 1/18/08, also drew a 1.1. This likely means the final rating will drop below a 1.0.
Today on NHL Home Ice XM204, Paul Kukla will be joining Mick Kern and Dan Blakeley of the War Room to talk about the All Star Game, about the NHL in general, and to take phone calls and answer question from hockey fans.
Paul will be on at approximately 11:25 am ET, but the show runs from 11-12pm. If you don’t already have an XM subscription, you can register for a free, 3-day trial, here.
Update 2:07pm ET: Here is the audio of Paul’s conversation on XM Radio this morning.
Note: Original post-time was 10:00am ET
NHL Network profiles one of the NHL’s signature voices, play-by-play man Mike Lange of the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight at 7:30 ET.
Over at NHL.com, I take a look at the 2nd half of the regular season. The race is on for the playoffs!
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 firstname.lastname@example.org