About this blog:

About This Blog:
I'm Denim. I cover all things sports, in particular Baseball, Football, College Football, & Hockey, especially the Baltimore Orioles, Penn State Nittany Lions, NY Giants, Colorado Avalanche, & Vancouver Canucks.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Keep NHL Players in Olympic Hockey

It was suggested to me by an amateur hockey expert that the several major injuries to NHL players in this Olympic tournament, such as Zuccarello and Tavares, will cause the league owners to stop allowing their players to play in the Olympics. I believe that would be a bad idea for several reasons.

With the waning popularity of hockey in the US, going back to unknown amateur players would kill the US TV ratings for Olympic Hockey, and hurt the NHL in a round about way.

It may cause some countries, such as Russia, to go back to not allowing their best players to play in the NHL, not as an "official" embargo, but as players being "encouraged" to play in home-country leagues such as the flourishing KHL, in exchange for being allowed to represent their country on the world's biggest stage. Russia did that for most of the 20th Century, pitting their "professional" National Team against everyone else's college kids.

I'm not saying NHL owners care about NBC's Olympic ratings, but the IOC does, and should fight to keep big-name players or threaten to drop hockey from the Winter Games, as the Summer Olympics did to baseball.

The only angle for the NHL owners is that patriotism sells in America. Team USA tends to ignite interest in the sport, which then increases the ratings and revenues for NHL teams and the league itself.

What the NHL currently has is dedicated hockey fans. They will always be there. But they are all that the NHL has, which is the problem. Attracting casual fans increases ratings, revenue, interest, and exposure for the league and each team. More Americans watch Olympic Hockey than NHL Hockey. More Americans are "patriotic" towards teams in red, white, and blue than are dedicated to an NHL team.

While I understand why NHL owners do not want to risk their investment in their players in games outside of league play, Olympic Hockey benefits the NHL as much as NBC and the IOC, and games featuring the world's greatest athletes in their sport are more exciting to watch. When I watch the Olympic Hockey Tournament, I want to watch NHL Hockey and buy NHL 14 for PS3. How about you?

©2014 Denim McDemus

A Quick Goodbye

I'm sick of hearing about Derek Jeter already. Ok, he's retiring. Now move on to the next story. Doesn't the media devote enough time to the Yankees already?

Talk about what's going on in Major League Baseball now, the scramble for the remaining free agents, not something that won't happen until the end of the regular season. (No, I don't expect the Yankees to make the post season.)

Wasn't there enough of a circus last year for Mariano Rivera? Are we going to have to endure a "Farewell Tour" every time a Yankee retires? Players retire every year, good players, even great players. Why should Rivera and Jeter be singled out?

Derek Jeter is retiring after this season. That should be the end of the story.

Wounded Warrior

Yankees Manager Joe Girardi said he expects Brian Roberts to be the Yankees’ full-time 2B all season. Orioles fans know how hilarious that statement is.

Olympic Hockey Schedule/Picks

Olympic Hockey Schedule:

Thursday Women's Gold Medal Game: USA vs. Canada 12pm ET on NBC

Friday Men's Semi Final Games:
Sweden vs. Finland 7am on NBCSN
USA vs. Canada 12pm on NBCSN

My Olympic Hockey picks:

Canada over USA for Women's Gold.

Men's: Red hot USA over slacking Canada, & so far unchallenged Sweden over Finland.

"Misappropriated Funds"

The Orioles spent $50 mil & a 1st round draft pick on a Ubaldo Jimenez, a guy who loses an average of 12 games a year, has a career ERA just barely under 4.00, & who no other team even wanted. Their only other signing was a guy named Suk, but Jimenez sucks...