Bill Simmons "The Sports Guy" with his take on the NHL lockout
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11-19-2012, 12:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2010
Well, I usually love his work and love Grantland first of all. But he is a casual hockey fan, with the Parise/Suter thing he obviously doesn't understand the regional obsession with hockey in Minnesota and the local ties that both players have and the huge surge it is giving an increasingly apathetic fanbase whose goodwill has been squandered.
He makes some good points in general though about the type of game that hockey is compared to basketball and I agree they should market it differently on a national scale, but locally these players can be stars. It's hard to market games as must-see events though on a night-to-night basis 40+ times a year when you dont' have that "star power" or the LeBron kind of player that makes people want to come singlehandedly. I don't know what the answer to that problem is but I think he is in the right area with that.
America is an idol and status-obsessed culture and hockey doesn't really lend itself to how hockey is marketed. Does he want them to go without star recognition all together? I remember listening to one of his podcasts earlier this year and him and his buddy House, who has been a longtime Capitals season-ticket holder, were talking about the Zetterberg-Weber incident in the playoffs. Neither of them could name Shea Weber - pretty much a unanimous top 4 defenseman in the entire league and the face of the Predators franchise. They were calling him Shea Walsh... there's a problem right there. These guys have unbelievable skills and two grown men that are SEASON TICKET HOLDERS can't even get the name right of somebody who's a top-10 player in the league??
Sometimes I think hockey could be better off as a weekend event with 25 less games and starting a month later. Games like how the AHL schedule is currently set up, and the season could really pick up steam after college football ends and NFL is dying down. The first few weeks of the season leading up to the Winter Classic with another break for the All-Star Game. The players would be much more fresh and the games would be even more intense, which is obviously a hallmark of the game to casual fans.
Otherwise, don't have too much to say but it's an overall interesting take from an admittedly outsider's perspective.
Last edited by puckfan13: 11-19-2012 at
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