Should NHL Home Game Scheduling Favor "Weak Markets"?

Discussion in 'Fugu's Business of Hockey Forum' started by danishh, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. danishh

    danishh Registered User

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    Should 'weak markets' get a disproportionate amount of home games in good days/timeslots for tickets? More Friday/Saturday night games? More Sunday and holiday matinees?

    Should these teams play the majority of their away games on weeknights?

    this of course would come at the cost of strong markets loosing some of these marquee homegames. Teams like Pittsburgh/Chicago/Philly/Washington/St. Louis/LA/Boston/New York/Toronto/Montreal/Vancouver/Calgary/Edmonton would have more weekday home games and more weekend games away.

    I see advantages:
    - revenue and attendance shouldnt change significantly for the strong markets. They'll sell out their games anyways.
    - revenue and attendance should improve for the weak markets would presumably improve.
    - TV ratings for the strong markets should improve as more hockey fans will be forced to watch the game on TV in these markets on what are already high-ratings nights. HNIC/NHL on NBC ratings should skyrocket.

    Disadvantages:
    - you piss off the STH's and especially the corporate ticket holders in the strong markets.
     
  2. Retail1LO*

    Retail1LO* Guest

    Absolutely not. No one should get preference. It should be balanced. There's already an imbalance with travel for some teams. That can't be avoided. The scheduling of home games on the weekends should be balanced as possible.

    Unless you're the league and you own a team in the desert that's hemorrhaging money like it's going out of style. Then you can schedule all the weekend home games you want to try and keep your losses at bay. LOL
     
  3. dj4aces

    dj4aces Registered User

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    No, I don't think any market should get better treatment in terms of scheduling. Weekend games might be better draws in non-traditional markets, but there's absolutely no reason for them to be disproportionate to those of strong or traditional markets.

    You can't just think about the business aspect of small market teams, you have to think about the business aspect of all markets in the league.
     
  4. Moo

    Moo Moooooooooooooooo!

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    Pretty much this. That, and you should strive to have a matching amount of home and aways against each divisional team, then each of the other conference teams. Balance out the schedule with the opposite conference for 41 homes and 41 aways, and there you go.

    No need to fix something that is working great as intended. (Yes, as a Columbus fan, it sucks to be one of two teams in the Eastern Time Zone and going West a lot, but on paper, we play our divisional teams and conference teams a proper number of games, and that aspect is not broken.)
     
  5. Dado

    Dado Guest

    Yes, absolutely, do this.

    And if it doesn't help enough, institute two sets of refereeing rules, one for strong-market teams, the other for weak-market teams. And if that doesnt work either, set a quota for the minimum number of weak-market teams making the playoffs.
     
  6. Turkpbr*

    Turkpbr* Guest

    That's up to you. Growing hockey and attendance is not necessarily about game start times. It is about allowing families better access to games. I would love for Coyotes games to start 15 minutes later, it would be better for my family, but not necessarily others.
     
    Last edited by moderator LadyStanley: Mar 27, 2011
  7. y2kcanucks

    y2kcanucks I Am Negan Sponsor

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    Absolutely not. If you need to start making concessions for these "weak market" teams, then why bother having them in the league when there are currently stronger markets that are unserved?
     
  8. 2525

    2525 R.I.P. Fugu

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    My response to the question--As a Canadian (who can drive both using MPH and KPH and who understands that there are probably more Americans that think we Canadians don't understand baseball/basketball/American football than Canadians that don't think those in the south understand hockey) I have no problem with the league trying to make the game work in the south.
    If that includes giving southern teams favourable schedules, why not.
     
    Last edited by moderator LadyStanley: Mar 27, 2011
  9. Metzen

    Metzen Registered User

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    It should be tied in with that same rules that govern revenue sharing.
     
  10. LadyStanley

    LadyStanley RIP Fugu

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    Mod note - let's keep this focused on purely a financial/timing-to-get-to-games issue. Let's keep the bashing out of the thread.




    From the Sharks perspective... They are now one of the "better" teams and are often the benchmark for opponents.

    That said, the best nights (attendance -- butts in the seats) are on the weekends. Mid-week have a few empty seats, less if it's a key opponent. (Regardless, it's usually reported as a sell out.)
     
  11. danishh

    danishh Registered User

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    In markets like pittsburgh, chicago, detroit, boston, washington, toronto, montreal, vancouver, calgary, edmonton, the games are going to sell out, regardless of its a tuesday or wednesday night game or if its a friday or saturday night game.

    so why not give the soft markets those home games to see if they cant attract more fans on more traditional 'event' nights and see if it can build a fanbase or at the very least increase attendance and revenue in those cities, with little to no effect in the already solid markets?

    It shouldnt effect travel balance or timezone balance much. I dont see why that comes into the discussion. They still have to play road games, and i'm not advocating that EVERY home game is a prime date and EVERY away game is weeknights.

    at the end of the day, is this not better financially for the league? Does it not help the top revenue teams if they can boost the revenue of the soft markets and therefore pay less out of pocket in revenue sharing?

    @LS - ottawa is that type of team too, largely due to bandwagon former leafs and habs fans in the region that will not support the sens when they're bad. Middle market teams that actually do well overall but tend to have worse attendances on weeknights shouldnt be effected by this. Just the big markets with 'guaranteed sellouts' should.


    on ice performance stays on ice. This is about the business advantages to the league as a whole if home games were scheduled favorably to weak markets. I dont see how it would change anything on the ice.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  12. Mad Dog Tannen

    Mad Dog Tannen Registered User

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    I'm totally for it. If adding 2-4 additional weekend games in a struggling market will help it, why would u be against creating another healthy franchise. No different then the Canadian assistance program.
     
  13. Shawa666

    Shawa666 Registered User

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    Ahem, Revenue sharing program?

    On a more general note, I don't think there should be a specific effort to schedule more weekend home games in these soft markets. All teams shoud get roughly the same number of home games on these nights.

    Individual games start times should be discussed between the teams/broadcasters, not imposed by the league.
     
  14. 2525

    2525 R.I.P. Fugu

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    Huge difference.

    The assistance plan paid out in it's entire existence about the same as today's revenue sharing plan pays out in just one year.

    And I don't think the assistance plan put butts in the seats like having games on preferred days of the week might do in certain markets.

    The league should try it, as I posted before.

    The only thing I ask is, if the league allows it, please allow Canadian teams to keep having home evening games during the playoffs, and not bend to the whims of NBC for afternoon games.

    Tit for tat.
     
  15. Buck Aki Berg

    Buck Aki Berg Done with this place

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    If the schedule existed in a vacuum, it wouldn't bother me a bit. However, each individual teams have their own requests, many teams share their barn with another tenant, and the networks need to be catered to as well. Any or all of these could stand in the way of favourable scheduling for given teams.
     
  16. Gnashville

    Gnashville HFBoards Hall of Famer

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    I think Toronto gets more Saturday home games than anyone else. But there should be no advantage given to anyone.
     
  17. 2525

    2525 R.I.P. Fugu

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    Hockey Night in Canada money talks I guess. (except when it comes to NBC) Plus tradition I guess.
     
  18. Duke749

    Duke749 Formerly "BigTuna49"

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    Maybe a few games, but I wouldn't want them to go over the top or anything. I'm sure Atlanta's attendence would be a little higher with some more favorable dates and i'm sure Montreal and Toronto would still have great attendence even with a few less appealing dates.

    Haymaker makes a good point though about teams that share buildings.
     
  19. 2525

    2525 R.I.P. Fugu

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    I could be wrong as I did just a quick look, but it seems like
    Nashville has 15 Saturday home games to Leafs 14 Saturday home games this year.:laugh:
     
  20. Retail1LO*

    Retail1LO* Guest

    The real answer to this question is: There shouldn't BE hockey teams in weak markets. LOL
     
  21. Moobles

    Moobles Registered User

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    :handclap: I completely agree. I also doubt it would change much for these weak markets, unless we can somehow prove that the only thing between the Phoenixs and Floridas of the league and Torontos and Montreals of the league is a prime-time game slot.

     
  22. bbud

    bbud Registered User

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    well said why should good markets lose games it would be stupid what next double ticket prices in strong markets so they still pay as much to NHL welfare to keep said weak markets alive this is one bad idea here.
     
  23. knorthern knight

    knorthern knight Registered User

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    Howsabout EVERYBODY gets more Friday and/or weekend games??? No, I'm not kidding. The season covers 27 weekends. That means 81 possible dates, or 83 if you count US and Canadian Thanksgiving Days, although you would run into conflicts with other events, especially NBA teams in the same building. Consider where possible...
    • weekend "double-headers", where the visiting team plays on either Friday+Saturday or Saturday+Sunday. Given the possibility of rising oil prices, this could cut down travel expenses somewhat.
    • I'm sure that the NHL already tries to schedule games together for nearby cities. E.g. Vancouver on a road swing could play Calgary and Edmonton on consecutive nights. Or Tampa Bay could do Islanders+Rangers+Devils on Friday+Saturday+Sunday.
    Sounds like a win-win to me. Comments?
     
  24. danishh

    danishh Registered User

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    your suggestion already exists due to simple market forces and revenue sharing.

    my suggestion would lessen that welfare, so strong markets would profit more.
     
  25. y2kcanucks

    y2kcanucks I Am Negan Sponsor

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    At the expense of fan convenience. Personally, I prefer going to games on non-work nights. I don't see why I should lose some of those game times just to accommodate those teams who don't receive sufficient fan support. I'm already paying extremely high ticket prices, and my ticket revenue dollars are going to support those financially strapped teams...I don't see why I should lose other perks as well.
     

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