The NHL is making waves and statements at this Olympics that they may not allow their players to play in the next Olympics in Sochi.
Excuse me? The NHL players in these Olympics has made it one of the best hockey tournaments ever and has turned on a bunch of people to hockey.
When has NBC ever got over 10 million people to watch a hockey game and that is when they buried it on MSNBC? The answer is never.
Brian Burke, the GM of the USA Team and GM of the Toronto Maple Leaves seems to be against having NHL players represent their countries.
Imagine some of our markets where we’re challenged attendance wise. You get into a situation in Atlanta or Florida that are fighting for a playoff spot, actually generating interest and people are following their teams in the standings and then close their doors for 2 ½ weeks and say, ‘Thanks for your patronage but come back in 2 ½ weeks.’
I would have to argue that watching the best play in the Olympics generates more interest that having monotonous NHL games on. The world’s focus is on the Olympics and this hockey tournament. You will get more exposure and people interested in the sport and that will help the NHL in the long-term.
Growing up in northern California, we only were able to watch hockey once every four years when the Olympics were on. Watching the 1980 hockey team win in Lake Placid peaked my interest and I became a hockey fan.
The best of the world were playing then except for the U.S and probably Canada because the NHL didn’t play. But the best of the world should play and that includes the NHL players.