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03-08-2009, 07:19 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Originally Posted by
Timbit, I appreciate the sentiment about not wanting to beat each other up. But heck, it's hockey and while the nationals are something to aspire to, to me the big deal is the conference (hyou play against those guys all year, why shoudn't it have more meaning? especially if you're trying to sell the level....look at the Q, they play best-of-sevens because they know it generates interest, it sells and it brings in dollars.......as you indicate, too many weird things happen in a sudden-death situation which is basically what the nationals are all about..they manipulate the seedings and/or sked to suit the format and best sell it to the local market, in this case, Thunder Bay...I just think there are many concessions made for the sake of a national tournament.........a program is only as good as its conference....you're trying to cultivate fans and the best way of doing that is through playoffs...look at the pros and cons of a best of five opposed to a best of three.....the only con is, like you suggest, possible injuries through a five game series.....2 weeks off is not a good thing...play a best of five starting this wednesday, friday, sunday, wednesday, friday......finishing on March 20......nationals begin the following thursday.....not particularly overly taxing.....think of money being generated in a best of five........think of the interest generated for university hockey.....anything to get the attention of the buying public
I'm almost in agreement with you about the conference being more important...almost. Most years you've got to win the conference to go anyway. But I think most people would rather have the National Championship banner than the conference banner even if it is a flawed tournament. It's just a bit more elusive and special.
Historically, the best teams entering Nationals don't win it...just looking at the last 5 years, Alberta at UNB in 2004, Moncton in 2007, UNB in 2008 all came up short. But that unpredictability also makes it fun.
At the end of the day, you have to be good to make it there, lucky to win it, and every team that wins it is deserving.
As for the importance of the AUS final and the pools this year - if you're of the opinion that the road to the Championship goes through Alberta regardless, then it would probably be in UNB's best interest to lose vs SMU. If they go in as #1, UNB then would only play Alberta on likely 12 hrs rest Sunday afternoon (a terrible disadvantage for the winner of the evening pool), possibly their 3rd game in less than 3 days, otherwise they could play Alberta with a day of rest earlier in the tournament. There's probably an incentive to avoiding a team that is playing on home ice too (Lakehead).
For SMU, winning it all makes sense - they'd likely go in as #2 in the afternoon pool, avoiding Alberta's pool and getting the full day rest should they make it to Sunday.
Funny how it works.
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