The season ended two months ago, teams are pretty much done making their offseason moves. There’s nothing new to talk about in the hockey world. Everyone’s discussed what Jaromir Jagr is going to bring to the Flyers after three years in the KHL or how Brent Burns will help the Sharks powerplay.
So how do we get our hockey fix?
It’s warm during the summer and with longer daytime hours, you can play some puck outside, right? Maybe in the northern part of the continent, but this summer (for most of us) it’s been hot, humid, and not conducive to outdoor activities. Nobody wants to play, and those who do, skate for a few minutes and realize it’s too hot. Goalies refuse to suit up. When things cool off closer to September, people will come outside and hit the rinks again. But that still doesn’t help right now.
The gamers will say firing up NHL11, getting the hockey fix and preparing for NHL12. But most people have had the game for almost a year now. There’s only so many times to act like your favorite team’s GM or work on that sweet deke in Be A Pro before it becomes tiresome.
NHL Network is a great creation. Unfortunately all summer their programming has been playoff games from this past season. With all the great games this year, there are equally as many bad ones. Occasionally the channel has slipped in some “Day That Changed the Game” episodes; some of the subjects include Patrick Roy, the Stastny Brothers, and Wayne Gretzky. But still not enough original programming to quench the needs of hockey fans.
All those things are decent time killers, but nothing can compare to the games actually being played. We can discuss how the Jets will do in Winnipeg, or who Jeff Carter should play with in Columbus until we’re blue in the face. Nobody knows what will happen until the puck drops. At least when September rolls around, training camps and preseason open and will give fans something fresh to discuss.
It’s also fun to make road trip plans. Checking the schedule and seeing where your favorite team is playing in close cities (or far if you like to fly) is a big deal to traveling fans. But when the planning stages are over with, fans are left with looking forward to their trip(s), which could be months in advance. Then it’s just more waiting.
For hockey fans, August just sucks.