ESPN wants the NHL?

Discussion in 'The Business of Hockey' started by Raptor, Feb 18, 2007.

  1. Raptor

    Raptor Registered User

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    For the past month or so, I have seen a lot more NHL coverage on SportsCenter, and earlier too, not just in the 50th minute of the show...they even showed college hockey highlights once or twice! Plus, the ESPN website has a LOT more NHL news on its front page, and even put the NHL in front of NASCAR and Autos...I know this is all really small things, but do you think ESPN would want to bring back the NHL on their network? The exclusive cable contract with Versus expires after the 07-08 season, so maybe "The Worldwide Leader in Sports" would already pick up the third-biggest sport in the world (behind soccer and basketball)?
     
  2. Hopefully. VS sucks.
     
  3. Injektilo

    Injektilo Registered User

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    Anecdotal evidence really has no place on this board.
     
  4. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    None of this means that ESPN wants the NHL. Rather, it means you personally witnessed more hockey-related coverage in the last month. ESPN may or may not actually have shown more hockey. Either way, I highly doubt ESPN wants the NHL back. It just isn't a good draw.
     
  5. LVIsles*

    LVIsles* Guest

    I have a hard time believing fly fishing and repeated poker championships get better ratings then a NHL game but I could be wrong
     
  6. techtroll

    techtroll Registered User

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    Bob McCown on Sportsnet has been saying for some time that his sources tell him ESPN wants to "get back into it," because they have "a gigantic hole in their schedule." Is that wishful thinking on his part? I don't know.
     
  7. Boocock

    Boocock Registered User

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    They do show College Basketball for "Big Monday", "Super Tuesday", "ACC Wendesday", and "Throwdown Thursday". At which point, they show NBA Basketball on Friday, College Basketball Saturday, and a special presentation on Sunday, usually some sort of basketball or figure skating.

    That is a whole lot of basketball.

    I'd like to see ESPN get NHL rights for the days of the week Versus and NBC aren't covering. I'm sure they would like to too. With young superstars such as Sid Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, Vince Lecavalier, Danny Briere, Marian Hossa, Joey Thornton, Dany Heatley, Jason Spezza, Evgeni Malkin, Eric Staal, Jordan Staal, Henrik Zetterberg, Patrick Marleau, Ilya Kovalchuk, Martin Havlat, Thomas Vanek, and Alex Semin taking over the NHL, just to name a few, I'd like a piece of that puzzle too.
     
  8. wesf23

    wesf23 Registered User

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    probably afraid their new nascar show is gonna tank, i mean why give so much coverage for the Non Athletic Sport Centered Around Rednecks and make the commentator a former 6'10 nba player:biglaugh:
     
  9. SPORTSMANIAC

    SPORTSMANIAC Registered User

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    I believe that former NBA player is a part owner in the Busch Series
     
  10. EbencoyE

    EbencoyE Registered User

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    Yes. I hate good coverage too.

    Lets go back to the crap ESPN (barely) gave us!
     
  11. MayDay

    MayDay Registered User

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    I don't remember who at ESPN said it, but in response to a question about this once, they said that the order of the sports at ESPN.com (along the top of the page) is based strictly on page clicks. If more people are clicking on the NHL tab, then it will move up. It's not a judgment by ESPN about which sports are most important.
     
  12. Wooty

    Wooty Registered User

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    The current Nascar Champ is from California.
    Before him from Indiana
    Before him from Nevada
    Before him Wisonsin
     
  13. Wooty

    Wooty Registered User

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    What is wrong with Vs. Coverage?
     
  14. TorontoSports

    TorontoSports Registered User

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    They should go back to ESPN, I don't care if it's on the deuce, it's better than VS which is horrid.
     
  15. Atticus Finch

    Atticus Finch Go _____ Go!

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  16. jerseydevil

    jerseydevil Registered User

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    ESPN absolutely wants the NHL....they just don't want to pay big bucks up front like versus offered...Espn used the numbers against the NHL and Versus said "we don't care, we'll still pay a big rights fee"...Espn would take them back in a heartbeat for the right deal...
     
  17. letsgoflyers75

    letsgoflyers75 Registered User

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    Versus can keep Monday and Tuesday nights. ESPN can take other weeknights.

    I have no problem with Versus but until they step up their other programming it's going to continue to be considered a joke by a lot of people, which doesn't bode well for the NHL. A lot of people keep ESPN on all the time while they're around the house. That kind of exposure can't possibly be bad for the league.
     
  18. jkrdevil

    jkrdevil UnRegistered User

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    I have no doubt that ESPN want s the NHL back getting them back means that the idea of Versus as a possible competitor is ended. AS long as the NHL is on Versus that could lead to the possibility of another league going there which would mean full compitition with Comcast who has the money to compete.

    Now how much coverage they want to give the NHL if it comes back is another thing.
     
  19. EbencoyE

    EbencoyE Registered User

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    All four of which are probably some of the biggest redneck states in the country except for California (though they still have a decent redneck population). I fail to see your point.
     
  20. EbencoyE

    EbencoyE Registered User

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    Sure, the exposure for the league would be good and I agree completely.

    But as a hockey fan who wants the best possible product, I think I should be allowed to be selfish and say that I'd rather the NHL stay on Versus so I can get good coverage instead of what ESPN would give us. (Relegation to the deuce, intermissions full of news nobody cares about like Barry Bonds or T.O., no pre or post game shows, no extra hockey coverage, and insult after insult from other ESPN personalities on their shows (Jim Rome, ATH, PTI, etc)

    So I'll take Versus over all that. Even if the NHL gets 0 publicity because of it. Us hardcore fans deserve good coverage. Forget the casual fans if it means us getting screwed over.
     
  21. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    I find it funny when people juxtapose hockey's ratings with those of rarely-shown events like Poker, as if it's a valid comparison.
     
  22. Kenadyan

    Kenadyan Registered User

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    ESPN treated the NHL like a red-headed step-child when they had the broadcast rights. Why would things be any different now?? :dunno:

    ESPN's hockey coverage sucked the final two years before the lockout.

    They also did away with NHL2Night about 5 years ago. I still don't understand the motivation behind that move. It was one of the few places where I could get any hockey coverage, and then one night John Buccigrass announces that this is their last show. No warning whatsoever.

    ***??

    I get VS on DirecTV, so I hope ESPN never gets the broadcast rights to the NHL again.

    You ever heard of the saying, "fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me". That should be the NHL's attitude toward ESPN.
     
  23. Machiavelli

    Machiavelli Registered User

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    I could see ESPN buying broadcast rights in the near future, at least id hopes so. Without the nhl, and with football, and baseball season being over, they show like 50% basketball 50% garbage(ie. poker, fishing, darts!?!, arm wrestling!?!, nascar, cheerleading?!?) and all other time past the 100% percent mark is sportscentre. Especailly during the winter theyd probably want at least a legit sport like hockey to come back to fill its timeslots.
     
  24. Evil Janney

    Evil Janney Registered User

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    No Football and Baseball right now and ESPN treats basketball like hockey when it comes to highlights.
     
  25. Tinalera

    Tinalera Registered User

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    To hear Mr Bettman when he was interviewed by Bob McCowan a couple of days ago, he seems to be quite thrilled at the growth(he said it, not me)on Vs. He said Versus is opening up in "8 million more homes", ect. If I heard right, he also implied that even if he wanted to talk to ESPN, he couldn't because he's currently under contract to Versus.

    I too am curious as to why ESPN wants back in again. Is it because of the traffic for the NHL on the website? Are they seeing stuff with the Nascar trend they don't like? Or is it, as was posted earlier, simply that they have a huge hole in their schedule(although when they ESPN was talking about all the programming that was garnering more ratings than the NHL, it shouldn't be that hard, should it ;))?
     

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