- Does anybody who is a DirecTV subscriber really miss the Versus telecasts of NHL games? I do, but only because the NHL's contract with Versus says that no local TV can be showing the same game. And that is the sad part. Those of us who buy NHL Center Ice, should be allowed to watch the Versus games on a NHL CI channel. If DirecTV and Comcast (majority owner of Versus) can't reach an agreement, wouldn't that be a great way to get fans to purchase the Center Ice package? The Minnesota Wild are on Versus 4 times in the next 8 weeks; 3 of those 4 are on the road. Wouldn't it behoove the NHL to step in on behalf of the fans, say 'we have something right here, which might provide a solution for now' and let the games be shown, while the two sides continue to act like they're a couple of 3-year-olds?
- Don't think NHL teams are losing fans due to the continued economic recession? Then how come at least seven teams that I regularly get e-mail from (Anaheim, Colorado, Columbus, Los Angeles, Minnesota, Phoenix, and St. Louis) are begging me to buy tickets? How come Ticketmaster is having a weekend sale for hundreds of events (concerts, sports, etc.)? So why doesn't the NHL acknowledge this publicly? The first step in addressing a problem, is to admit it exists.
- Despite the misfortunes of October's horrid start, the Wild are only 6 points out of a playoff spot as they begin December play next week, with 2 games vs. Nashville (one home, one away) sandwiched around Anaheim's final visit of the season in St. Paul on Dec. 4th. After the Anaheim game, the Wild embark on their most intense (5 games in 8 days) road trip of the season. The Wild will have already played half of the road schedule (21 games) after the Dec. 12 game at Vancouver. By contrast, the 21st road game last season (granted, a non-Olympic year) was Jan. 30 at Edmonton.
- The Wild ended November with a 5-3-3 record, a .590 clip. A lot of NHL teams would like to play at a .590 clip over a calendar month. That would play out to winning 9 of the 16 games played next month (when 9 of the 16 games are on the road). Oh, by the way: Wild play in December on the road in all 4 time zones... 2 road games on Eastern Time (Montreal, Ottawa); 1 road game on Central Time (Nashville); 3 road games on Mountain Time (Phoenix, Colorado, Calgary); and 3 road games on Pacific Time (Vancouver, LA, Anaheim).
- Anyone actually like some of the new third jerseys that have come out recently? Nashville debuted their thirds Friday night vs. St. Louis; majority dark blue, trimmed in black and white. Dark blue and black 'checkerboard' design at the waist. Next to no gold on this jersey. (They used all of it on those 'Grey Poupon' mustard-yellow jerseys a few years ago), and fangs on the shoulders. Are the Preds trying to bore their fans into buying new jerseys?
- Florida debuted their new, really blah, third jerseys against the Penguins at home Monday night. Nothing about these jerseys says 'buy me', even to the most hardened Panthers' fan. These scream 'Houston Aeros, if the WHA team had actually merged into the NHL' all over 'em. The shoulder has an 'FLA' super-imposed over a sun image. The main logo is a round (similar to Minnesota and St. Louis) with a Panthers' head (only) in the middle. It looks more like the logo for a local elementary school here in Minnesota..."Home of the Kittens." They actually paid someone to design this stuff? Where do I sign up??
Anyhow, that's it for now. Keep warm, everyone.