probably won't be a sellout, Ottawa is enver a big seller here but they're also a newer team. I'll find out when the tickets go on sale. Probably some point in the pre-season since it's early enough in the season.
That will be a contender for lowest attended game of the season probably. There's always a midweek game or two in October or November that has some shockingly low figure like 12,000 that makes you go WTF.
Center Ice costs considerably more than just adding a sports package that includes the NHL Network.
BUt having the NHL network is nice. NHL on the Fly is their version of "Sports Center" and is a great way to catch up on all of that day's games and highlights. No other network is going to provide that same level of coverage. NHL Live is good on afternoons during the season. And they do show games...and replay a game from the night before, the next day. For draft day, trade deadline coverage, and free agent day....the coverage can't be beat unless you live in Canada.
This is the best price you'll ever find, so if they have your size, I would suggest taking advantage of the deal while you can. These are the jerseys that retail for $300. I believe if you spend more than $140, you get free shipping... I bought a Canes Alternate and Canadiens Heritage Classic and they automatically took off the $15 charge.
Center Ice all the way, Anton Bomb. NHL Network kinda of sucks nowadays. Right now, all they're doing now is replaying the 2011 playoffs, 24 hours a day. During the season, On the Fly is on for half the day and they don't really show old school stuff anymore. They talk over the highlights on OTF and being able to actually watch the games > live look-ins. NHL.com has the video highlights, the TSN simulcasts (Free Agent Frenzy, etc.) and I believe you can stream NHL Live as well.
Living out of the market, CI is a necessity. Beyond the Canes, I enjoy being able to catch a 10 p.m. West Coast game every night. I don't know about your cable company, but FiOS ties CI and Extra Innings together... you get a couple months of Extra Innings for free. To be fair, the video quality is not the best, NHL Network has exclusivity of their simulcasts and I only get 2 HD channels.
seriously, you get every out of market game, the archive is huge covering any game from that season, and you get access to the Gamecenter Vault, which is frigin awesome.
some of the games they have on there:
Carolina - Ottawa 2000 - Irbe 2nd European goalie to 25 SOs
Carolina - Dallas 2002 - Ron Francis 2nd player to 1,200 assists
Carolina - Philly 2006 - 8-6 goal fest, first Staal hat trick
Carolina - Toronto 2002 ECF: game 6
Carolina - Detroit 2002 SCF: game 1
Entire Carolina-New Jersey 2006 ECSF series
Entire Carolina-Buffalo 2006 ECF series
Entire Carolina-Edmonton 2006 SCF
I am disappointed they don't have more from the 09 playoffs (specifically that classic series with NJ) or the Molson Miracle on there yet.
I actually hadn't looked at the Vault very much until yesterday when I started browsing around in it. Great stuff in there. There are 60 classic Canes games in there; I watched the 02 East Finals Game 6.
I like Gamecenter Live a lot and will be getting it again this season instead of Center Ice. The deal breaker for me is whether or not Center Ice has HD games on your local provider. Cablevision here is garbage and does not have HD games on Center Ice, meaning the quality is actually better on Gamecenter. It also means wherever I am at I can watch games as long as I have a computer. Additionally, you can pick the feed that you want to watch, so I was able to watch FS Carolinas all season. The one downside is that the streams are around a minute behind, so you have to be careful about reading forums and chat rooms during the game.
Vote #3 for Gamecenter Live. I've had it for the last 4-5 years and just keep liking it better and better... Note: You need a fairly good internet connection to be able to watch the stream without it stopping to buffer. The blackout thing isn't much of a pain if you are willing and able to put a little effort into working around it. For the $$$, it can't be beat in my opinion.