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Hockey: Will It Ever Come Back?  
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1646 times:

Ever since the lock-out they had over at the NHL last year, there's been lots of talk that professional hockey is on the decline.

Is it your opinion, as well, that the NHL is losing its interest for many North Americans, and particularly those south of the border?

Thanks in advance for your cool answers.  Smile

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGarnetpalmetto From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 5386 posts, RR: 53
Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1640 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
Is it your opinion, as well, that the NHL is losing its interest for many North Americans, and particularly those south of the border?

Absolutely not. Attendance is up league-wide.



South Carolina - too small to be its own country, too big to be a mental asylum.
User currently offlineNeilYYZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1640 times:

The expansion of the league was un-necessary. I live in Toronto and am a die hard Leafs fan, so hockey in Toronto is as big as it ever was, and it will probably always be that way.

I think that cities like Montreal, Toronto, Detroit, New York (Rangers), Boston, Buffalo and perhaps Chicago will be safe for the forseeable future. What I can't understand is why there are teams in places like Nashville and Phoenix or even Pittsburgh for that matter. I think that teams need to go back to Winnipeg and Quebec Nordiques, those are markets where they long for a team and would do very well there.

I don't think that the NHL is on the decline, only that there are teams in markets where they really shouldn't be. If there were 4 less teams in the NHL and some moved to markets where they could thrive I think the NHL would be in much better shape.

- Neil


User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1640 times:

I'll have to take your word for it.  Smile Down here, we hardly hear anything about the L.A. Kings or the Mighty Ducks anymore.  Sad

User currently offlineA332 From Canada, joined Feb 2005, 1644 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1636 times:

Ummm... hockey has been back in Canada since the fall... and it is doing extremely well up here... every Flames game has been sold out all year and this is pretty much typical for all Canadian NHL teams... though after all, it is OUR sport!

Some of the American franchises need to find new homes, as it was already said, Quebec and Winnipeg and perhaps Hamilton should get NHL teams for sure. It would certainly beat seeing so many empty seats in places like New Jersey & St. Louis, for example.



Bad spellers of the world... UNTIE!
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1631 times:

By "come back" I mean "come back in popularity". Sorry for the confusion!  Embarrassment

User currently offlineNeilYYZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1627 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 3):
I'll have to take your word for it. Smile Down here, we hardly hear anything about the L.A. Kings or the Mighty Ducks anymore. Sad

I hear a lot about the Kings, what do you want to know? Cammalleri's sister is friends with my sister.

But I know what you mean. I was down in LA for a while a few years back during the playoffs, and Hockey hardly got any play on ESPN or in the papers, I had to call home to find out what was going on.

- Neil


User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3571 posts, RR: 29
Reply 7, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1624 times:

Just to give you a view from the other side of the pond, I fear that Icehockey is losing popularity in Germany, but it won't get too much of a problem. During the olympics, German TV showed almost no icehockey on the main channels, so this indicates that the interest is going down.

However, the DEL (german icehockey league) game between Cologne and D�sseldorf in the K�lnArena (one of the biggest halls in Germany) had 18000 spectators some weeks ago. I would not call that too bad  Smile.

If Germany manages to get up to the A-World Championship again, icehockey might get more popular again. I sure hope so, but don't expect it this year, also the football world championship makes us focus even more on football than we already do.


User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1624 times:

Quoting NeilYYZ (Reply 6):
I hear a lot about the Kings, what do you want to know? Cammalleri's sister is friends with my sister.

Well, since you offered... are they gonna win the Stanley Cup this year?

 

Seriously, though -- no one I've talked to recently in this town is the slightest bit interested in hockey. And when I turn on the radio, I never hear any news about the Kings, let alone the Mighty Ducks (or whatever they're called these days). No coverage on TV, either.

In fact, I didn't realize how much hockey was totally absent from local coverage recently until the coverage of Olympics hockey, which was about all the hockey that was shown in network TV all year.

I do recall seeing NHL action last year, though.

[Edited 2006-03-09 04:25:58]

User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1618 times:

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 7):
During the olympics, German TV showed almost no icehockey on the main channels, so this indicates that the interest is going down.

That's a bit sad, really.  Sad At least we managed to get a bit of Olympics coverage here in the 'States, though our men's hockey team pretty much tanked. ("We're better than Kazahkstan! We're better than Kazahkstan!")


User currently offlineNeilYYZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 1614 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 8):
Well, since you offered... are they gonna win the Stanley Cup this year?

Ummm, no. I think the final this year will be Detroit/Ottawa. And since Leaf fans and Ottawa fans are like oil & vinegar I will be going for Detroit all the way. None of this, you're Canadian, go for the only remaining Canadian team crap, I'll have my Draper jersey on the whole time.

Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 8):
I do recall seeing NHL action last year, though.

That's funny, they were on strike last year  Wink Perhaps you meant 2 years ago?

- Neil


User currently offlineTPASXM787 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1730 posts, RR: 19
Reply 11, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 1610 times:

I think the NHL will be back now better than ever, especially in these ways:

1)XM Radio: 24-hour NHL channel (best thing going by the way, XM 204)
2)XM carrying most games, expanding to exclusive coverage next season.
3)NHL Network hits the US this fall (can't wait)
4)Teams in the south winning. The Lightning have 38 straight sellouts, the Thrashers may make the playoffs, Carolina is great (bastards) and Nashville is drawing great as well. These teams winning will generate greater interest and get more people involved. With more people going to games, this will lead to more people watching. Go ot one game and you're hooked.
5)The league and players finally have a true partnership, and a specialized, experienced VP of Broadcasting.

Just my two cents, I think the future looks brighter than ever.



This is the Last Stop.
User currently offlineItsjustme From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 2768 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 1601 times:

Quoting TPASXM787 (Reply 11):
NHL Network hits the US this fall (can't wait)

I hadn't heard about this. Any idea how it's going to work or what games they're going to carry? I have to subscribe to "Center Ice" through Adelphia Cable right now so I can see all the Wings games out here (I moved to L.A. from Detroit and most people here can barely spell the word H-O-C-K-E-Y much less actually watch or understand it) and it's a bit pricey (but well worth it).


User currently offlineTPASXM787 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1730 posts, RR: 19
Reply 13, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 1591 times:

Quoting Itsjustme (Reply 12):
I hadn't heard about this. Any idea how it's going to work or what games they're going to carry? I have to subscribe to "Center Ice" through Adelphia Cable right now so I can see all the Wings games out here (I moved to L.A. from Detroit and most people here can barely spell the word H-O-C-K-E-Y much less actually watch or understand it) and it's a bit pricey (but well worth it).

I don't really know any details yet, but a couple of the guys on the XM channel who work for the NHL Network (Todd Lewis and Gary Green) have said that is hits US markets in the fall for next season.



This is the Last Stop.
User currently offlineTbar220 From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7013 posts, RR: 26
Reply 14, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 1586 times:

I dunno, the Kings are still a popular team in Los Angeles even if they don't get the media coverage.


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User currently offlineItsjustme From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 2768 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (8 years 5 months 4 weeks ago) and read 1577 times:

Quoting Tbar220 (Reply 14):
I dunno, the Kings are still a popular team in Los Angeles even if they don't get the media coverage.

OK, OK, people in LA DO know how to spell Hockey. That was a low blow. There are some die hard Kings fans but they're definitely in the minority. Prior to going to a Kings home game, I'd never seen so many people talking on cell phones at a hockey game. And it always looks like they're talking to someone else in the crowd as they're usually waving while they're talking. And if I get asked to "sit back" one more time while watching a Kings game, someone might end up getting shot. Sit back in my seat? At a hockey game? Are you kidding me? It's a frickin' hockey game not an Opera.

As for the sport coming back....I don't think it ever actually left. Yes, I know we missed an entire season but I think that, if anything, given the change in rules, the increase in scoring, and the shootouts, it's popularity will actually increase as time goes on. I'm an "Original 6" sorta guy and I don't care for the shootouts (bring back sudden death OT for all games) or the sometimes ridiculous penalities that are being called but if the result is an increase in the sport's popularity, then I can't argue with that.


User currently offlineTbar220 From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7013 posts, RR: 26
Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 1567 times:

Quoting Itsjustme (Reply 15):
I'm an "Original 6" sorta guy and I don't care for the shootouts (bring back sudden death OT for all games) or the sometimes ridiculous penalities that are being called but if the result is an increase in the sport's popularity, then I can't argue with that.

See, I love the sport and I love playing it. And I LOVE these new rules. I'm so glad the refs are coming down hard on the interference infractions. I love that they got rid of the two line pass. As a goalie, I love some of the rules they've changed for goaltenders, making it more about skill and not equipment size. The game was just too physical before (lets see who can hit the hardest) and the Bertuzzi incident just made me sick. Now its more about skill and not who can knock the other guy out. There is SO much talent in the NHL and I felt some of the older rules were stifling a lot of them.

This year has some AMAZING young talent. With the likes of Ovechkin, Crosby, Lunqvist, Svatos, Frolov, and many others, I think the NHL is in great hands.



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User currently offlineItsjustme From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 2768 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 1564 times:

Quoting Tbar220 (Reply 16):
Bertuzzi incident just made me sick

Agreed. Talk about a lame attack on someone...cheap shot them from behind and then body slam them and break their neck. I was disappointed in the league's casual handling of that incident. It was even more nauseating seeing him participate in the Olympics.

I like that they did away with the two line pass infraction but some of the penalties the Refs are calling are a bit on the ridiculous side. As Stevie Y has said, "Call the penalties that are relevant to the play". I do like that we're seeing less and less fighting but I miss the body on body checking. I am wondering how long it will be before the league institutes the automatic icing calls.


User currently offlineYOWza From Canada, joined Jul 2005, 4882 posts, RR: 15
Reply 18, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 1542 times:

Hockey will never go away, fact. There is the possibility of more moving of teams and of contraction but hockey will never die in Canada or the North/North Eastern
US.

YOWza



12A whenever possible.
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1534 times:

I suppose now would be a good time to mention that I once lived next door to an NHL player and his lovely wife.  Smile No telling who, what team, or when, since that would be too revealing, but it's the God's honest truth.

User currently offlineTbar220 From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7013 posts, RR: 26
Reply 20, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1533 times:

My guess? Marty McSorley. The only reason I say this is because my dentist was good friends with him and his family.


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User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1528 times:

Quoting Tbar220 (Reply 20):
My guess? Marty McSorley. The only reason I say this is because my dentist was good friends with him and his family.

If this is meant for me, then I'm afraid your guess, while interesting, happens to be incorrect.

Also, I am not a dentist.  Big grin


User currently offlineCFCUQ From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 712 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1522 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 19):
NHL player and his lovely wife.

Gordie Howe ? .......snicker........


User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3571 posts, RR: 29
Reply 23, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 1519 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 9):
That's a bit sad, really. Sad At least we managed to get a bit of Olympics coverage here in the 'States, though our men's hockey team pretty much tanked. ("We're better than Kazahkstan! We're better than Kazahkstan!")

Indeed it was. In fact, all games were showed at a digital channel, but that channel, while for free, can only be seen with digital equipment. The main channel preferred interviews (man I hate that) with German athletes (well, since we won so much that is ok, but I would rather see Slovakia-Czech Republic). The semifinals and the final were showed, though.


User currently offlineYeahitsK From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 1505 times:

It's interesting that you asked the question "will it ever come back?" Come back to what? It never really had "glory days" in the US, where it has always lagged behind the big 3 (football, baseball, and basketball) for attendance, interest, and most especially TV ratings. The more appropriate question is will it now grow to a point where it rivals one of the big 3 and is considered a major sport by the masses? IMO, the rule changes have increased the speed of the game and scoring, which will make it more suited to the short attention spans of people in this country. I think we will see hockey growing in popularity. The team I follow is setting attendance records this season, which is a pretty good indication of interest in the sport. There are rabid hockey fans in the US, myself being one of them!
As for not hearing much out there in LA, it is my personal opinion that it is sacrilege to award the Stanley Cup to a team whose home ice is located in an area that receives 0" of annual snowfall!


User currently offlineFlyKev From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2006, 1382 posts, RR: 1
Reply 25, posted (8 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 1503 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

As I was reading, Hockey (mainly NHL) has suffered yet another black eye to itself. This means that it will need time to recover.
Give it another year, and hockey will be back.
Or you could move to where I live, and have people question 'what the hell are you wearing' when I wear my Dallas Stars Jersey and only a few fans scattered around (Mainly my mates...).
Not all bad, I am lucky enough to have a very minor league team play near me, and it may be nothing special, but is fun, and the crowds about 400 fans tops.

Go Stars!



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