Saturday, May 28, 2005

 

HEADS UP!

Today is gloomy. ESPN is gone (for the moment). No CBA is signed (for the moment). Sponsors are threatening (for the moment). Newspapers across America are spreading the word..."The NHL is dying and no one cares."

Let me tell you something. In the words of Bill Murray in the movie Meatballs, "It just doesn't matter!" There are alot of differences between the mainstream press and myself, and here's one of them...I can say what i am about to say and they can't...

NHL Hockey is a great game.

I am so sick of people concerning themselves with TV ratings in southern cities. I am so sick of the NHL, with this amazing product, begging for TV deals. I am completely sick of the "went to a fight and a hockey game broke out" jokes. I'm so sick of hearing about celebrity poker ratings. Do they get 20,000 fans a night-100 nights a year? ENOUGH ALREADY! Our game is awesome and a thing of awe!

And screw those who say it isn't. I don't care what they think of us. I don't want to make excuses for the game. I don't want to defend the game. I WANT TO WATCH THE GAME. (they can watch poker and bowling)

To make this ESPN news anything more than 1 million lost to the owners and 1 million lost to the players per team is to admit we have zero self-respect in what we can do. I guarantee you that if Crosby ends up in a major market in the US and does the things he can do with a puck, ESPN's 60 Million will not matter, and a new deal could be on its way in 60 days from now, And the folks at the NHL know this. ESPN or Comcast or the NHL Network in the US will be paying 3-5 times that price, and the NHL will be dealing from a position of strength. A position they should expect to be in.

The coming generation of hockey players is by far the most exciting that has ever put on skates. When hockey returns to the ice it will be the players that make it exciting again. Not the rule changes. This will be INCREDIBLE hockey. You will know it right away. As a lifetime hockey fan, you will feel it. The second this deal is announced the fun of free agency will hit us like a freight train. Notice I say announced, because it is going to happen. Then can you imagine what it will be like to watch these young kids take to the ice along side of some great veterans who will be forced to play at a speed previously never reached? Speed is going to be the name of the game when we return. The Lightning are the first team of the new generation...but you know who is waiting to play out there??? Crosby, Kovalchuk, Carter, Nash, St. Louis, Afinogenov, Iginla, Heatley, Thornton, Brad Richards, Mike Richards, Ovechkin, Malkin, Fleury, Lehtonen, Zherdov, Phaneuf, Parise, Kiprusoff, and that barely touches it. The talent level coming in is so far ahead of any prior to it. In my opinion we will be referring to hockey in terms of BL and AL...(before and after the lockout)

The camera angles...cameras on dasher boards, and inside goalie masks. All in high definition. it is going to be UNREAL! I think the NHL should mike up some players and put some games on HBO without censorship. Put a mike on Tie Domi. And you will create TV stars. Imagine if we were allowed to hear everything two enforcers say prior to a battle. Or a bench yelling, "Clear the (bleeping) puck!" Or some guy calling a guy on the opposing the team a (bleep) on the bench...we could barely wait for the two to get back on the ice...I know its not for the kids, but movies show far worse.

So screw their 60 Million Dollars. Lift up your heads and say, "This is a great game!" Let them come begging to us for the TV rights when the new generation of superstars take over. Let's not even blink at this low point, because the future is ridiculous with positivity. Let them say, "hockey is below arena football." Who the hell cares? Do you care? Is there anything in arena football that comes close to a play-off overtime? Is there in NFL football that comes close? Is there anything in life?

It's time folks. It's time for the NHL and the NHLPA to realize they are on the same team. It is time to announce this deal, hold the draft, get the guys signed, tweak the rules, and DROP THE PUCK!



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