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03-08-2013, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Killion View Post
Yes quite true, and Florida for example promoting themselves as an Event Destination, there just so happens to be a hockey game going on as well in order to appeal to a broader cross-section of the population. Obviously mixed results. The key really is to inculcate & foster loyalties with people when their in their formative years, ages 3 to 12. Some, many in fact, simply dont like sports, dont like phys ed, dont like participating in intramural let alone little league, be it baseball, hockey or whatever. Others of course sport specific, based on pre-disposition, socio economic environment, ease of access & availability etc. If the father or mother in the household are sports fans, very good chance the kids will adopt whatever sport/team their parents are loyal to and so on & so forth.

While the Olympics, Winter & Summer are indeed excellent platforms & portals through which someone of a formative age might find whatever sport or discipline beyond exciting, wanting to play it, compete, smitten, sold lock stock n' barrel, "what I wanna be", many older generations will simply watch the "event" part, the Opening & Closing Ceremonies, maybe keep an eye on Medal Counts so they can at least "sound" like they could give a frigg when the topic comes up at work or wherever, how their countries doing, but thats it. Olympic coverage is wall-wall, suffocating almost, even die-hards tuning out due to burnout, and if the games are in another time zone, opposite side of the World, forget it. Why watch something when you already know the outcome?

Really, the NHL collectively really needs to take a good hard look at itself in the mirror, put their money where the mouth is in "growing the game" by working with the franchises, league sponsors, the NHLPA, community & school groups, HockeyUSA/ Canada & others in proactively developing & building the infrastructure for entry at the grass roots levels. Secondly, I believe there are just way too many games, 82 plus post season & playoffs. Needs to be seriously cut back, each game more meaningful, an actual "event". All done by mid-April at the latest. Quality instead of quantity, more exclusive but as its a bigger deal, more appealing to the casual fan, ergo more inclusive. Obviously, less money short-term for the franchises & players, but long term, worth that short term pain.
The NHL needs to invest more in youth hockey programs across the south and inner cities. It does great in the suburbs (at least in New England). Investing in more outdoor roller hockey rinks would be good too so kids up north can play year round.

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