Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 10/05/06 at 03:24 PM ET
Critics said last year that the NHL was wrong -- and that might be a kind description -- for jumping to a little-known network. However, as I said then, the NHL in my opinion made a great move to find a new cable home. The NHL needed Versus, and the network needed the NHL. It's a marriage that was good for both. For example, on Wednesday afternoon, there was a block of pregame programming that included a show called "Soul of a Champion" on Devils great Martin Brodeur, a show dedicated to Game 7 of the last year's Stanley Cup finals and a show that featured the travels of the Stanley Cup during the offseason.... You might construe this as a programming plug for Versus, but, more important, it proves the NHL struck a brilliant deal. The league is getting more than just game coverage, which is all it got from ESPN in the last few years of its deal. On Versus, the NHL won't get put on the back burner. The NHL got a network that is growing and hungry, and reliant on the league, to some degree, to be a cornerstone of its programming.read on
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