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03-18-2004, 10:28 PM
NJD Jester
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Originally Posted by Beukeboom Fan
Did you read what you just posted?
Er...I posted it, didn't I?

Did you ever consider that it's not ESPN's fault? That there just aren't that many Hockey fans? That of the 260 million people in the US that all of them might of played poker or bowling at some point in time, but maybe 1/2 of 1% have been lucky enough to play hockey?
Oh, I'm sorry...I didn't realize you had to play a sport to watch it on television. I guess that's why figure skating does so poorly.

As for it not being ESPN's fault...have you seen the way the NHL gets shuffled around the lineup? Or the fact that, outside of eight teams, the network hasn't built interest in the league? Or the fact that, like most of Bettman's NHL marketing, ESPN's refusal to embrace fighting and physical play in its promotion of the sport in favor of starf--king had turned fans off rather than attract them?

I think it's hysterical that people come on here and blame ESPN/Bettman for the lack of ratings. Everything that Bettman has done is in the attempt to improve the ratings. It's just not going to happen in the US though, and that's not necessarily a bad thing.
Let's see... "Everything that Bettman has done is in the attempt to improve the ratings." And everything he's done has failed, to the point where they are rolling back Bettman-era rules (like the space behind the net). But no one should blame the guy who got the job because he's a marketing "genius" for poorly marketing the sport.

I'm glad you don't run my business...

Also, just back on topic. ESPN's contract runs out after this season, so unless they rebid for the rights to televise the NHL games, which seems very unlikely at this point, of course NHL tonight was cancelled!

How many people here hate watching soccer (or Nascar, or baseball, or whatever)? I know you couldn't pay me to watch a soccer game, but it's the most popular game on the planet. Whose right? Me, or the 3 billion people on the planet that like soccer? Not every person is going to be a fan, and thats what the NHL has to realize.
We agree that the myth of the casual fans has made the league make some decisions it simply should not have made.

But as for ESPN: The same marketing for 10 years; the same announcers for 10 years; the same eight teams for 10 years; hell, the same bloody theme song for 10 years. It hasn't worked, and it's not hockey's fault.

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