Frustration with NHLPA...
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09-11-2004, 01:39 PM
...in the drink
Join Date: Aug 2002
Originally Posted by
While this may be true, I never stated that the NHL or the professional sports industry was the same industry as my "hot dog stand". What I did state was that the business fundamentals are the same. The NHL owners have a product they want to sell. They market their product, sell it to customers and make a profit. They also have assets and liabilities that they can use to limit the amount of profit that appears on their books come tax time. Etcetera, etcetera.
I wasn't in on the hot dog stand part of this, wasn't trying to reference it.
And your right, that is basic business. The problem I was having is that it is rarely if ever that simple in the interpretation of specific problems. That's not just about what you posted, but it has to do with many past threads in general. What sticks with me is that some of these very particular problems and situations we are discussing, we do not have sufficient info to discusss it and even possibly come close to the reality of the situation. Yet some people continue to talk with such confidence, assuming with few doubts that they are correct. And often times they flub simple business and economic concepts; their arguments are flawed from the start yet they'll never admit to it.
I'm not saying that I'm some sort of business guru, quite far from it. Miles and miles away from it. But I realize what I know and what I don't know. And believe me, what I don't know dwarfs the little that I do know. I don't have the arrogance to pretend otherwise, and one of the few things that gets under my skin is those that do. I often handle that with humor, not getting upset. But at times bearing the claws is necessary, only way to get that point across. That's not really the case here, just trying to explain why my last post may have seemed a bit grumpy.
The problem with the NHL is it has too many teams carrying too few talent. That's why fans have been stuck with the plodding defensive clutch-and-grab trapping system that has sucked the life out of the game and sent fans off to find other venues of excitement. Did you watch the Finland-USA game, for example?
So now, with labour strife happening, a TV deal with a major US network about to expire and fan support dwindling, the league is belatedly hoping to convince fans and ABC television they're serious about breathing life back into their dull product with a few cosmetic changes like goalie pad width. If I ran my "hot dog stand" the way Bettman ran the NHL I'd be out of business in months, if not weeks.
Yeah, wasn't that into the game last night. Liked the hitting, but other than that... I'll pass.
Unfortunately, that's what a large part of the league is now. It goes without saying that most of us would prefer the run-and-gun of the 80s, but that era is over for good. It's not coming back, I've swallowed that very difficult pill. But I heard another theory about the defensive style of today that made more sense than the "dilution of talent" theory.
Europeans came pouring into the NHL in the late 80s and early 90s, and that is still happening today. That's not a debatable point. The talent level in the NHL jumped significantly, so much so that the idea of new franchises could work given all that extra talent. Now did the NHL go overboard in giving out franchises? That's debatable but even I'll give a yes on this (only to two less teams though). And let's not forget that training has also jumped by leaps and bounds over the last 20 years. Players quickly become bigger and faster and stronger. The fact is that their is more talent in the league than there was before expansion, and I can dig up a couple of studies that show this to be true. The defensive style were put into place not because of lack of talent, but they were instituted to stop all the talent that was there. Some of these coaches finally realized that defense actually does win championships, and trying to do it by offense is much too risky. They taught their teams to clamp down and it's now evolved into a system where you can apparently mug any player you want and only get a minor penalty every now and then.
The debate about the style of play and what it's doing to the NHL is something I've never discussed much, never felt the need for it. For me, it would be frustrating and unproductive at best. I'll pass on that.
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