I knew that if the Americans made it far in the Olympics that would generate interest from Americans. But with that being said they have long ways to go.
One thing that might help them is if ESPN broadcast games once again, they're a major sports network and if people are starting to watch again then that would be a great investment for them. No offense to NBC or Versus but they're not power houses like ESPN.
I really do hope that hockey in the United States keeps getting more interests because it would do wonders for the league itself.
I like to hear that as well, and I hope the trend continues. Hopefully the NHL will surpass the NBA at some point, but that's unlikely. I think it helps when a team like the Blackhawks are having success. Obviously Chicago is the 3rd largest market in the United States, but I also think they're more popular around the country than teams like the Hurricanes or Lightning.
When ESPN dropped the NHL, that was what I would consider one of the biggest on purpose blows to the sport of hockey I've ever seen. There was no reason for them to do that. Popularity of the coolest sport on ice was on the incline and building new markets and fans with ease. Then this wave of "Family Friendly" sweeps the nation and hockey gets the kibosh. Fuckin bullshit if you ask me.
I've personally boycotted ESPN ever since, I refuse to watch it.
Canada has it right, TSN covers all sports. I seriously envy anyone who can get TSN on a regular basis because I honestly feel that the TSN Sports coverage is vastly superior to that of ESPN.
in my opinion... for the NHL to pick up heavy heavy steam in the States... Fox Sports needs to Pick it back up again. NHL games need to be aired on basic TV. To capture the eyes and time slots of people that dont have Cable or Satellite.
I totally agree with you about TSN, I have TSN and in my opinion it's way better then ESPN, and their less bias in my opinion(analyst and such)
The Olympic hockey games were shown on National Television across the US, and looked how much it got talked about, yes it did help that the Americans made it all the way to the Finals, but having them show all the games helped big time.
Then Chicago won the Stanley Cup which helped the NHL a lot because like Echoes mentioned it's the third biggest market in the US, Philly is a pretty big market as well.
If Bettman got his head out of his ass and concentrated on major cities in the US instead of trying to save the Coyotes and such then that would help the NHL even more.
But with that said, it's a step in the right direction.