Let’s go back to ESPN

So, correct me if I am wrong, but the three-year agreement that Gary Bettman shackled the NHL to with Vs. comes to an end in ’09 right? This said, what are the chances for the upcoming season, of a sport whose honor and traditions date back to the late 1800s, no longer having to share a channel with guys who make a living getting their manhood crushed by livestock?

In the playoffs alone, Vs. has dropped the ball so many times with their broadcasts, it’s a wonder the 49ers aren’t trying to pick them up as a wide receiver. Games not on when they should be, cutting out in OT and camera men who look like they should be covering professional bowling because the moves are so slow.

I know ESPN didn’t want to pay the kind of money that Bettman thought the NHL deserved, but what the league has lost in revenue almost certainly killed the positive profit margin he believed he had obtained. At least on ESPN, ads for the NHL ran at other times than just during NHL games (and its a shame, because it was good ad campaign).

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It would be one thing if Vs. was a one stop NHL bonanza, but that isn’t even the case. To see a full season of hockey, I have to first make sure my cable plan includes Vs. and then I have to go out and drop well over $100 for the Center Ice package on top of that.

Now nobody enjoys watching cycling and cage fighting more than I do (oh, wait, everybody enjoys watching those more than I do), but there simply has to be a better platform for NHL broadcasting than the current one.

Lyon Reese, Los Angeles