Raking Leafs

Mixing metaphors and casting cliches about hockey and the Maple Leafs for the ether's pleasure since MCMLXVII.


Showcase Showdown

Just a quick thought.(Update - that sentence alone should be a massive warning) If the NHL is willingly ceasing operations for two weeks and allowing its stars to compete in the Olympic games ostensibly to promote the sport, and by extension the league itself, why is the Center Ice Package not broadcasting some or all of the ice-hockey games? If the NHL will broadcast a Habs game to the lower-48 en francais, why won't they show us Olympic group play?

How else are these athletes supposed to be showcased? What, let NBC and its America vs. ______ broadcast formula spread the good word? Give me a break. Even CBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (yes that's right you nay-sayers of anything not privately owned) will be featuring non-canadian games.

If the NHL was on the ball and behind Olympic participation (which seemed to be the case after the "successful showcase" Salt Lake was credited as being, but not so much after the owner lock-out, the year-off groin injuries, the compressed schedule and renewed vitality of the "who pays your check?" bloc, i.e. the victorious owners of the clan Lock-out) this question would not be asked by this hockey fan. I should not have to struggle to find Olympic hockey on my television. It should be there at the touch of my remote, schedules up to date and not to be determined, ready and willing to embark on the time travel trek through my DVR to my eyes.

Get the CBC feeds on the Center Ice Package pronto! Get all ice hockey feeds with NHL players available on the Center Ice package. Broadcasting game tape without commentary would be an improvement. Mainly, it would be nice if the NHL appeared interested in promoting the game. Board of Govenors? Hello?

Or am I right to assume Olympic participation is now frowned on?

UPDATE(02/15/06 10:00 am): Holy crap! Am I influential or what? Here is the broadcast schedule that includes most of the hockey games played. My apologies to all who may have been offended. Yes, even you Gary.

Maybe this is a new NHL.


  • At 7:11 PM, Blogger Alan Linquist said…

    Ninja, I know you were born Up North, but how long have you lived in The States now? The difference between CBC Olympic hockey coverage and NBC Olympic hockey coverage shouldn't be a surprise to you. Two things:

    1) Most Canadians love hockey, and they love to watch stuff about the game. We're talking hockey in all of it's forms, whether it be Squirts or Professionals, on the pond or on Olympic ice.

    2) Most Americans love America, and we love to watch stuff about Americans. And that's pretty much about it.

    I too wish we got more Olympic hockey coverage down here, but unless you want to start a letter-writing campaign to NHL Center Ice or maybe OLN, it ain't gonna happen any time soon.

  • At 8:48 AM, Blogger JP McGovern said…

    Ummm, MSNBC is showing all of the games today. That's 690 minutes of hockey and most of it includes non-USA hockey. And I think it's all being shown live. I know I watched all of the women's games live at least (including non-USA games).

    The NHL has very little say in how/if/when these games are broadcast. At the most they could leverage their players participation and demand the games be broadcast in a certain way. That would probably make them bigger dicks, especially if the IOC/NBC called their bluff and decided to send amateurs.

    Anyway, that point is moot as there are five or six games on today on a basic cable channel available to most and easy to find.

  • At 9:57 AM, Blogger ninja said…

    I just found the schedule. It isn't exactly tivo friendly, but the info is there.

    Alan, this was my little letter writing campaign. Though I would challenge #2. Americans like a good story, just like everybody else. Americans just need a chance to see it.

    JP, the NHL holds more sway with the Olympics than you give it credit for. Or atleast, that was the perception I got after the last games and up until about November 2005. Maybe not in determining content, but surely laying claim to partial rights of the content. I'm not sure of the status of the relationship between the NHL and IOC right now.

  • At 7:21 PM, Blogger Alan Linquist said…

    Americans like a good story, just like everybody else. Americans just need a chance to see it.

    Don't tell me what Americans like, Canuck. I was born here. So you can take your "Tim Hortons" and your "Canadian Tire" and you can shove them up your "Tolerance", buddy. I kow what I'm talking about.

    Except when it comes to Olympic Hockey coverage on TV, I mean.


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