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Media Access Depends On The Teams

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

Players, coaches and media around the NHL are again getting used to in-person interactions, after the 2020 playoffs and the entire 2021 season were spent solely on video calls.

But there was plenty of consternation in various precincts last week when the return to full media access reporters had hoped for was suddenly dashed a couple days before camp opened.

Leadership of the Professional Hockey Writers Association had previously informed members access was expected to return to pre-pandemic policies, which would have made the NHL the first of the four major North American sports leagues to reopen its locker rooms to the media.

The caveat, of course, was that things were subject to change. And they changed quite a bit after a video meeting of team public relations directors and league officials sparked by discussions at the Player Media Tour earlier this month in Chicago.

While still in pandemic times, the NHL is now opting against a blanket policy and allowing teams to set their own policies based on local rules. As you can imagine, things are all over the map.

Teams such as the New York Rangers and Boston Bruins are welcoming reporters back to the locker room, with the Bruins even creating a tongue-in-cheek video of veteran Boston players issuing welcomes to veteran Beantown reporters. Others are opening the locker room at specific times or on certain days.

But the New York Islanders, under the firm thumb of ultra-tight general manager Lou Lamoriello, immediately announced that all interviews of players and coaches for the entire season will be on video calls. They even started training camp with no uniform numbers on sweaters and no rosters for the media, before finally producing some information for those gathered to cover a team that has legitimate Stanley Cup aspirations and will be playing in a new arena.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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.

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