Why the IIHF WC is important

Discussion in 'International Tournaments' started by hdw, Apr 29, 2007.

  1. hdw

    hdw Registered User

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    Sorry if this has been rehashed over and over again but I think is worth to think a bit about.

    Since it's played at the same time as the NHL playoffs it doesn't get much media interest in NA, it's a bit of a youth or 'losers' tournament.

    But from a european perspective it's covered 10-20 times more than the NHL playoffs. Heaps of live games on TV, massive press coverage, special edition of newspapers and yada yada.

    So it becomes the media image of hockey, the big games we see is WC and Olympic ones.

    And given that such a large portion of the NHL players of today are european, it actually becomes important for NHL as well.

    I think that if you asked the euro players of today in NHL of their most important hockey memories watched while growing up, the majority will list memories from WC and Olympic games.

    Everyone (almost) dreams of an NHL career, but much of the drive for the youths comes from watching their national team.

    I think.
     
  2. RorschachWJK

    RorschachWJK Registered User

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  3. itshomerdoh

    itshomerdoh Registered User

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    Do Europeans care that they're essentially watching everyone's (and I mean everyone, not just Canada) "B" or "C" team, or worse? I mean, so many players are still in the NHL playoffs, hurt, or just plain skip the thing now. Or is it that the event is now bigger than who's playing, sort of like what the World Junior Tournament has become here?
     
  4. Siberian

    Siberian Registered User

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    That's all european fans think of - NHL playoffs... NOT!

    IIHF WC is a great tournament, it has an unbelievable atmosphere.
     
  5. psycho_dad*

    psycho_dad* Registered User

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    Yes people do realize that most of the top end talent is out playing the NHL playoffs, but like you said, the event itself has grown bigger than who's playing.

    Of course everyone would rather win the olympics or world cup, but winning the world championships is good too.
     
  6. itshomerdoh

    itshomerdoh Registered User

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    Er, I didn't say that. What I was saying was do people care that because of the NHL playoffs guys like Brodeur, Elias, Parise, Jagr, Lundqvist, Nylander, Afinogenov, Drury, Vanek, Alfredsson, Heatley, Spezza, Datsyuk, Lidstrom, Zetterberg, Luongo, the Sedins, Niedermayer, Pronger, Selanne, Cheechoo, Marleau, and Thornton to name just a few, aren't there? Plus the guys who got knocked out in the 1st round and didn't feel like going, or the guys who just flat out skipped the thing.

    My question was how do people feel about it not being a 1st rate tournament, like the Olympics perhaps?

    Ok, thanks for a real response.
     
  7. SergeiK

    SergeiK Registered User

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    Europe is officially the worst country on Earth
    That pretty much sums it up.

    Ukraine had a weak team this year. I don`t know why. Are many ukrainians still playing in NHL? I don`t care and I don`t care about the reasons why Team Canada isn`t the best possible.

    This "1st rate tournament" thinking requires that you think with NHL eyes. Because I don`t follow NHL therefore I don`t know who are those players that belong to the "A Teams". Who is the best goalie of the NHL right now? Is it Dominik Hasek still?
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2007
  8. RandV

    RandV It's a wolf v2.0

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    I'm not European but I wouldn't think so. Compare it to Football, they go nuts every four years for the best on best world cup, yet they still have that yearly tournament don't they?

    Plus, its not like all the best players are in the playoffs either. What you have left is more than enough for a for a strong tournament. I mean. the annual winner is probably right on par with the Stanley Cup champions.

    So in other words, best on best is for every 4 years. The WC is a good way to finish of the other years.
     
  9. twelve

    twelve Registered User

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    It's more about countries playing against each other than individuals. For one, there are only eight teams of each NHL conference that make it into the Stanley Cup, and those don't contain all the best players anyway, two, if a country can't make its best players take part in the tournament, that's the country's problem, it's all part of the contest. Lastly, the coverage of the World Championship is much better than that of the NHL playoffs (NHL is only shown on Pay-TV :P ) and so of course it's the WC that's watched.
     
  10. hdw

    hdw Registered User

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    They don't care since they don't know.

    NHL in swedish media is some 30 second clips once or twice a week showing Swedes scoring or saving a goal. In printed media it's a summary reporting on the swedes, even during the playoffs.

    Actually, during the playoffs there's more reporting on what players that might be available then on the actual games.

    So most people, with the exception of a tiny group of nerds, doesn't know anything at all about NHL except that the players earn lots of money, fight all the time and are supposed to be the best.

    So all the big games ever seen or heard of are international games.

    When Saku Koivu was growing up, going to practice and playing hockey the image he had wasn't of himself scoring the GWG for Canadiens in a Stanley Cup final, it was wearing a blue and white jersey with a lion on it scoring the GWG of a WC or Olympic final (against Sweden or USSR I'd guess).
     
  11. Siberian

    Siberian Registered User

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    Exactly, the same in Russia - very few people know about what is actually happening in NHL. For people who don't follow NHL it is very hard to care if Luongo plays at the WC or not, he is virtually unknown to WC fans.
     
  12. Pushkin*

    Pushkin* Guest

    World Cup= NHL CUP it's not even a legit tournament. The finals are always in north america the refs are north americans and everything is made to have usa-canada final. IT's just for the promotion of nhl in usa where they dont care. Imagine soccer world cup always beeing held in england and scotland and having english refs for english games... Olympics #1 World Championships #1B World Junior #1C...
     
  13. hdw

    hdw Registered User

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    It can't be compared that way.

    The NHL can have all the best players in the world and basicly ignore everyone else since there's so much more money going around in NHL than in any other (bi-)national league. And that's not some obscure money getting pumped in, in revenue from the fans in one way or another.

    Besides it's history as a professional hockey league is second to none.

    So it's no surprise that it's much bigger than WC or even Olympics in the markets where it is played.

    But even today with all the euros playing in NHL it's not remotely as known outside that market. And for hockey to grow it needs to get published, broadcasted and present in the public mind.

    The growth of hockey as a game also means that there'll be even more players available for the professional leagues all over, not just in NA.

    And that's why WC and Olympics is so important outside of NA.
     
  14. therealdeal

    therealdeal Registered User

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    Its pretty much only important in Europe, its basically a European championship, which most IIHF events are, the IIHF is basically just a European hockey federation.
     
  15. Canuck21t

    Canuck21t Registered User

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    That's also my question. Is there a Football World Championship every year? I don't think there is one every year but I'm not sure, can anyone clarify?
     
  16. hdw

    hdw Registered User

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    Not really.
    Since NHL culls the best players from every league.

    Good european, or global, hockey therefor means more available talent for NHL, and later on, even better hockey in NA.

    Not that everyone goes transatlantic, but more talent spreads into different levels of professional hockey, and the top crop ends up in NHL.
     
  17. klappklapp

    klappklapp Registered User

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    In a way i think its a little sad that hockey is so focused on NHL in the sense that it isolates the sport. In football the WC is as we all know pretty much the culmination of the sport as a whole where all countries come together and manifest their love towards football. In hockey such a culmination never takes place, its always a race between the NHL playoffs and the WC. I really think that the NHL and the IIHF needs to work this out. I mean what would be cooler than a WC that grabs the attention of the whole hockey community instead of half the fans not giving a damn about one of the two. International hockey really needs a rallying point imo.
     
  18. Burgs

    Burgs Registered User

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    There is a major football tournament every 2 years, either the World Cup or the European Cup (which is basically the same sans Brazil and Argentina). On the other hand, football doesn't play any role in the Olympics.

    The real die-hard hockey fans in Europe know that the WHC is kind of second-rate because the best players are still in the NHL playoffs. But it's the closest we can get to an annual best-on-best. And as someone else already mentioned, the names on the back aren't as important as the crest on the front of the jersey. Plus they are simply the established tournament over here, having been around since 1920.
     
  19. Jazz

    Jazz Registered User

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    The point is that in Europe, they do not consider the context of whether is a 1st rate tournament or not - it has a long tradition there and will be for the foreseeable future extremely popular.

    Also, for those players eliminated in the first round Stanley Cup playoff playoffs who don't feel like going are typically Canadians and Americans. Unless injured, most Europeans hope a flight to represent their homeland (ie, Gaborik, Demitra etc).
     
  20. Jazz

    Jazz Registered User

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    :handclap:

    My points exactly (as I have argued numerous times on different forums) - the NHL should be doing whatever it can to help promote the game overseas. Anything that helps hockey anywhere is inevitably good for the NHL.

    This is why it is imperative that the NHL remain in the Olympics. Only the short-sighted will argue for pulling out of the Olympics. People don't see that in the past few years, hockey has made inroads in many countries overseas and having the game at least visible on a world stage such as the Winter Games only helps that.

    Before Nagano, any talk of a starting goalie from France (Huet), a 40+ goal scorer from Austria (Vanek), NHL players from Denmark (Hansen and Nielsen), NHL draft picks from Hungary (Vas and Szuper), or a Calder candidate from Slovenia (Kopitar) would have been laughed at. Now there is more attention paid to hockey in these countries and this will in turn improve hockey's health worldwide.
     
  21. Pushkin*

    Pushkin* Guest

    Nhl season is too long anyway. It should start in september and end early may so WC would start 2nd week of may and have all players available. Real sports have a world championship every year. Soccer it's 2-4 years but in between there is the qualification phase so its always going on. Come may nobody cares about hockey anymore in north america come june or late may except people in the cities still in it. But only in Canadian cities since in the usa the 18000 that follow hockey are at the games and there is nothing in terms of tv ratings in the states. Even in Canada a 7th game of stanley cup finals with flames or oilers get a ridiculous rating compare to the grey cup let say.And playoff hockey is getting boring especially this year low scoring chances lots of traps icing and that kind of rating killing tactics.
     
  22. Pushkin*

    Pushkin* Guest

    And finally Canada-Germany preliminary round double the ratings of a sabres-rangers game on tsn... Tsn knows they have schedule no less than 12 games for the WC and every year their best ratings is WJC. Nhl should end way early even with the hardcore fans when it's sunny outside and hot nobody cares about nhl anymore. WC Final on May 16-20 let say should end the hockey season.
     
  23. Chileiceman

    Chileiceman Registered User

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    I don't understand why they don't play this tournament after the Stanley Cup (or right before everyones respective seasons). That way all the hockey world's eyes are on the tournament, and there would be better players. Kind of like having a World Cup every year, except at only 1 location.
     
  24. Pushkin*

    Pushkin* Guest

    the world cup = nhl cup. Nobody cares about that it's not legit. Have a soccer world cup every 4-8 years only in England and with english refs for england games... This would be the equivalent of the nhl-nhlpa "america" cup... Nhl season should start earlier finish early may and have World Championships from May 7-May 23 for example. After that people dont want too see hockey with the sun outside...
     
  25. Pushkin*

    Pushkin* Guest

    The only other solution is having a real world cup like in soccer. Maybe each 2 years in between olympics. BUT A REAL ONE . One time in Czech another time in Russia another time in Canada NOT ALWAYS THE FINAL IN CANADA WITH CANADIAN REFS HELPING CANADIAN TEAMS !!!!!!!!!!!! And for it in september august forget it guys are not in shape it's not the time of Cold War when a Canada Cup meant way more than just hockey...
     

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