Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Just get it done

Embarrassing. What else do you call a major professional league getting undercut by a rogue outfit, out of business for 25 years?   
  
In a gaunt attempt for publicity Saturday, the World Hockey Association, defunct since it went bankrupt in 1979, delivered a hard slash to the NHL’s credibility by conducting a free agent draft in which all professional hockey players, including those already under NHL contracts, were up for grabs. The Boston Bruins’ Joe Thornton and former Ranger Eric Lindros were among the lucky chaps selected in the first round. The WHA’s hope is that the current NHL labor impasse will drag on and eliminate the upcoming NHL season, clearing the way for the WHA to sign some of hockey’s biggest stars.
 
But even with a few big names under contract, it’s hard to believe that a league that boasts a homeless team named the "founders franchise" would do much long-term harm to hockey's aristocracy. The boys at the NHL possess too much international credibility and the fierce loyalty of millions of hockey-mad Canadians to be seriously affected.
 
For the NHL, the biggest problem is already rising to the surface: Intense criticism from fans and pundits alike has slammed the league for an increasing lack of credibility as one of the four major American sports. In addition to being in serious danger of entering the 2004-05 season without a network television contract, the league faces the erosion of a loyal fan base exhausted after years of unsuccessful rule tinkering meant to increase scoring. As the league spins towards a seemingly inevitable work stoppage, "Are you out of your minds?" seems like the only real question left to ask.
 
Players and owners need to take a look at the pro sports landscape, recognize that their long-term success (and survival) is contingent upon the lucrative American market, and stop gnawing at the hand that feeds them.
 
Get a deal done, NHL, or risk slipping even further from the consciousness of the average American sports fan.
 
Read about the WHA draft
here.




5 Comments:

  • At 3:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I agree,

    I love Hockey. and recently I have bought stock in it. Not like real stock on Wall street, but a stock market that is strictly for sports.

    You have seen it? Its pretty cool. You buy issues for your favorite teams and you make real money. Not like a fake stock simulator. I cash out Dividends each time the team wins. Also I can sell my team stock when the price goes up.

    check it out if something like this interests you.
    heres a link http://allsportsmarket.com
    you can log in and check it out for free..

    They just released IPO'S for Hockey this week, so there are alot of good deals there.

    Keep up the good work on your blog!
    -Erik

     
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    Gerald E.
    http://www.hockey-nhl-game.com/
    Hockey Fights

     
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