Archive for the ‘NHL Premiere’ Category

For the past five years, the NHL has hosted regular season games with 17 teams (and the Ducks, Kings and Rangers a second time) taking part.  Host cities have included Berlin, London, Helsinki (three times), Prague (twice), Stockholm (four times).  The past three Stanley Cup champions have started their season overseas.  The NHL is going global, with an increasing number of players coming from the other side of the world.

The Kings and Rangers tangle in Stockholm.

So why is it a bad idea?

The team’s fans get screwed.  Okay, so the NHL gets exposure to overseas fans, but each team that goes over loses a home game.  The Kings will actually lose two home games this year, as they “host” both the Rangers and Sabres in Europe.  So for any Los Angeles season ticket holders, they go from seeing their team 41 times to 39.  With some teams struggling in their own markets, it seems odd to try and promote teams with only ties to (maybe) a couple players of the participating teams.

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Every so often, some of us at Crimespree Hockey will partake in a “roundtable debate” on hot hockey topics.  This edition will discuss the NHL Premiere games in Europe.

The 2010 NHL Premiere features Carolina vs. Minnesota in Helsinki, Columbus vs. San Jose in Stockholm and Phoenix vs. Boston in Prague.

Dan: I can get the reason they want to do this, because they want to expand promotion of the league.

Rob: But they call this “beneficial”, but the Olympics is a “waste of time”.

Dan: The Olympics is a HUUUUGE deal across the globe though.  The problem with this, is A) nobody over there really cares about our teams, and I understand they want to change that, marketability.

Rob: The DEL fans (watching Sharks vs. Adler Mannheim) were the only ones excited. They didn’t shut up.

Dan: But, it makes things unfair for the 4 (or 6) teams that go over.  Look at Carolina, who goes over and doesn’t have a home game until the end of October.

Michelle: It’s definitely a disadvantage for the teams that go over because they are going to be worn out from travelling. (more…)