Archive for the ‘hockey’ Category

I’m sorry, but the NHL has dropped the ball.  We are huge fans in this family, this hollow, this area, but we don’t subscribe to satellite service.  And we don’t get fancy channels with our cable supplier.  But its hard to upgrade to satellite when you don’t particularly like the thought of the need to keep them clean, deal with the fact that you live in a forest and a mountain does stand between you and the actual view of the satellite and the fact that I pay pennies compared to my fellow TV viewers.  And even still, it doesn’t matter what my reasons are, but I don’t have a service that gets……….Versus.

I’ve been ever so slightly bitter since ESPN and ESPN2 stopped carrying hockey (and really, replaced it with Poker, Pool and some weird soap opera?… is that even still on?).  I used to watch hockey more than most anything else.  Any team.  I knew most of the players all over the league and my favorite team (well, 2nd favorite as the Penguins will always be my #1) was the Mighty Ducks.  But no more does ESPN think they should actually carry sports or games from other teams, let alone hockey at all.  So, at least, thankfully, we do get Fox Sports Pittsburgh and get to see many of the Pittsburgh Penguins games.  While I adore them, I would enjoy seeing others for some variety or at least friendly sparring with my friends.  We used to miss some because they were on a local Pittsburgh channel, while annoying, at least it was from my hometown so I could grumble but….it was usually only on Saturday nights and I’d go have fun doing something else (or watch ESPN).  Now the games we miss are because they are on Versus! Ummmmm, FINE.  Still get to see a lot but it’s getting more annoying.

Then it happens.  The NHL and Versus get greedy.  Some of the Stanley cup playoff games were actually put ON VERSUS!  What?  Huh?  Come again???? These games are the culmination of a season of cheering and rooting and loyalty to our team and they end up blocked from view?  And even if I subscribe to the NHL channel on the Roku I hear they’re blacking games out there, just like how we get old boxing matches on TV.  Scuse me NHL, but WTF?  Maybe if we’re lucky we can catch some games on Saturday on NBC…..although that seems to be dwindling, or is it that we just have busy lives and can’t sit around all day Saturday in hopes the NHL will grant us some bit of hockey viewage.

Now the NFL, on the other hand, well, while I cannot expect to see every game on Sunday, guess what?  I get a full lineup, of big games even!  Every week!  On…….network television!  There’s not one football time slot where I have to go….dangit, can’t see that game!  And I’ve not had to miss one Steelers game at all due to it being on Versus or some other obscure network that so many don’t get.  And what’s more, is I don’t have to worry about it, think twice about it or even bitch that the kids are too young to spend all day in a bar so I can watch the games there and drink beer!  I can just sit back and enjoy the games.

Then, this weekend.  Pro Football and Pro Hockey….big celebrity weekend for them.  The NHL All-Stars and NFL Pro Bowl this weekend.  I’m kinda pissed that I don’t get to see the skills competition, definitely for the NHL, I’m pretty sure for the NFL b/c I didn’t see it but honestly I could be wrong.  Skill competition though, that’s fun.  Something everyone in the family would enjoy…..and we do want the kids to enjoy it, do we not?  After all at their young ages we should be corrupting them to like this stuff so they grow up to be proper consumers and spend their money on merchandise accordingly, right?

But today, today was the “big” games.  The NHL All-Stars….on…..Versus!  That’s right folks, for some reason a deal wasn’t reached with any network station or even TBS or something like it to show it.  Yup, that dumb obscure station, not one most people would get.  Oh we checked and checked to see if it was on, but nope.  I saw tweets that it was in fact actually happening but no.  But I did hear that NBC, earlier before the game, gave us approximately 37 seconds of skills competition coverage! Oh ya baby.

I’ll accept that ESPN has their heads up their butts and totally screwed up and I can’t fix that.  But I can say, for the things that matter to all of us, show it somewhere that actually is most accessible.  NHL could take a lesson from the NFL because my kids see way more football on TV.  And you, NHL, you’re not worth the money to drill a hole in the mountain and subscribing to the NHL channel when you block home games for my favorite team, well its slimy and sucky.  While I will always love the sport of hockey first, I don’t buy as much memorabilia anymore, my give a damn about other teams, well, its busted, and sadly enough, even the biggest fan in this house (who is not me) also has resigned to just not caring so much about anyone but the Pens.  We still would if you didn’t make it so exclusive of a club to see them.  And really….. hockey always gets the shaft when it comes to being represented in about everything from t-shirts at the store to Christmas ornaments, you think the NHL would do more to make it more accessible.  So folks, hopefully you like your hometown team and have Fox Sports to show them to you.  (By the way, the sports sections here in Wal-Mart that have hometown team paraphernalia…TONS of Steelers stuff, no Pens stuff.  Nada.  No hockey stuff at all.  How’s that promoting your wares working for ya NHL?)

Oh ya, and guess what’s on FOX right now… (thumbs up, NFL, 2 thumbs up)

Oh ya, NFL rockin the network TV