Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Alanah McGinley on 11/03/08 at 04:11 PM ET
From Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy,
Ask hardcore hockey fans if Versus is indeed a “hockey network,” and the majority would argue against the claim. Since purchasing the NHL’s cable rights in 2005, the Versus network hasn’t exactly endeared itself to die-hard hockey fans in the U.S. Between the silly mistakes and the self-inflicted wounds to its reputation, there isn’t a month that goes by without some impassioned rant about its failings as the NHL’s cable home or some fan-driven effort in support of the NHL reconciling with its abusive former spouse at ESPN.
To many fans, Versus is a punchline; a jigsaw puzzle of unrelated (and fringe) sports that viewers still can’t find in many hotels or sports bars around the U.S. Its hockey talent and coverage are much maligned, with even the most optimistic fans left frustrated by the approach to its most prized asset not named Lance Armstrong.
Not that any of this troubles the NHL’s cable host, which is available in 74 million homes nationwide.
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