Hockey: Could This Be Our Year?
Added by Macaulay Scott Renner on August 22, 2011.
Well it’s another hockey season descending upon us this year. And with the lockout of the NBA looking like its almost going to be a definite, could this be the year that the NHL makes a positive move in terms of popularity among the people and rise in viewer ship??!! Could this year be the year when people actually turn there attention to those white guys on skates? Could this be the time when those same people finally understand what the hell offside and icing is?
Of course it still doesn’t help that the majority of games are on the Versus channel, a channel that most people don’t even realize they have unless they are avid fishing or bull riding fans. I am not knocking the channel but it’s just hard to compete against ABC, ESPN ,CBS and FOX. So after baseball is over in October and there is no basketball to watch, what will every one watch all week? Of course football is king on Sunday and Monday, but the rest of the week will be bare and empty.
Hopefully this lockout really does boost ratings and bring new fans to the sport. I don’t wish basketball gone, but the greediness of the owners and players does nothing to enhance my love (or like) for the sport. To me, hockey is one of the greatest games on earth but because it doesn’t bring in the amount of money that football, baseball and basketball bring in, it gets pushed to the side. Just because they don’t sell as many jerseys or bring in the ratings as the big three, it lacks the support by the media.
And that brings me to another argument that I have. Who is to blame about why hockey doesn’t get the attention and respect that it deserves among the people. Who is to blame about why hockey gets pushed to the side and is constantly way down the ladder on Sportscenter in the morning even when there is a major playoff game from the night before? Did you ever notice that? There could be a huge hockey game or even a game 7 playoff game from the night before and if you tune into Sportscenter the following morning you would think that the lead is the game 7 right? But guess what? That morning the opening segment isn’t about game 7 but it’s about Alex Rodriguez and the fact that he isn’t going to play that day because he injured his hamstring while getting out of bed that morning! Or some other ridiculous story that somehow has the audacity to overshadow hockey.
So you ask who is to blame. I blame the media for it all. I blame Sportscenter and the rest of the major sports media. Why? Because everyone in this country is a follower and lets the media dictate what they like or think they like rather than make decisions for themselves. So when the media puts hockey way down on the ladder for highlights or for excitement, the people take notice and unconsciously acknowledge the tone that the media sets.
So imagine this then. What if the media put hockey at the front of every show and every highlight in the beginning of every show? What if Sportscenter led every show with the game from the previous night, no matter how small or not, and talked about how fantastic the game was and boasted about how great this play was or did you see Sidney Crosby do that? What if the media actually started to show hockey the respect it deserves? Don’t you think that after awhile when people started seeing hockey highlights lead in every single sports show they would begin to take more notice and begin to accept the sport as if it were what they wanted to watch that night? Hockey would and could be like football, baseball or basketball. It could be on the same level. Look at Canada and their sports, for them, hockey is what baseball is to us. What do think those people are talking about at night? It sure as hell isn’t the Toronto Blue Jays!!!!
So what I am saying is that I blame the media for the half hearted love of the sport and the way they broadcast it. Ok, sure hockey will probably never take over baseball and the love that people have for it, but the other sports are wide open and could easily be challenged for viewer ship as well the money that it could take in. It could certainly sell as many jerseys and take in the same amount of sponsorship from commercials and endorsements. It’s frustrating to watch these other sports get the attention they do for reasons that are both baffling and at times, incomprehensible, to watch the players act like fools and people still buy into it all. Don’t get me wrong, I love these sports almost as I love hockey, but it’s just the way all the sports are portrayed and the way the media hypes up certain aspects of them. I watch the replays that are shown sometimes and I listen to what these sportscasters have to say and it makes me sick. But what can I do. Nothing. But I can write this article and tell you how I feel and hope you open your eyes and see exactly what I am saying. Hopefully you can understand how I feel. Hopefully you tune into a hockey game this year and see what a great sport it is.
The media controls us in ways that we don’t realize sometimes, this unconscious and subconscious control that it exerts over our likes and dislikes is a powerful medium. We should love our sports for our own reasons, not because someone tells us what is cool and exciting. Not because we see who is buying the most jerseys and therefore decide that we should too.
So the next time you watch Sportscenter or watch any sports news, remember my words. Don’t let someone else tell you what sports you like, that’s your job!