NHL’s Golden Opportunity

Despite all of the damage that the NHL strike has done to the sport of hockey, another sport may just swoop in and save the day.

Ironically, it would even be as a result of a strike.

The NBA and its players’ union have recently broken off negotiations regarding a new collective bargaining agreement for their sport, meaning that basketball as well might be nearing a disastrous lockout of its own.

For arena owners, the news has got to be a crushing blow. In the past, many of those venues relied on numerous basketball and hockey games for a consistent source of revenue, with a steady diet of concerts and other events mixed in to supplement that.

With the NHL lockout, many of the arenas had to scramble to find events to host during their suddenly free time, perhaps adding a concert or two here and there to make up for it.

But in large part, the arenas have lost a ton of business because of this tomfoolery, and you can be sure that their owners are none too pleased with the recent NBA news.

Unless the Rolling Stones can sweep in and provide a year’s worth of revenues in a single bound, I would expect them to levy additional pressure on the NHL owners and players to get their act in gear.


This is in addition to the major sponsors of the NHL that may or may not decide to renew their partnerships with the league as the fast-approaching deadline of June 15 looms.

One of those, ESPN, must be especially eager to see some progress as a result of recent negotiations, especially if the NBA does indeed go on strike, as that would leave them with a huge hole in their programming to fill

"Stump the Schwab" and "Teammates" can only provide entertainment for so long before fans clamor to see actual sporting events on a sports channel.

Timing is everything, and if the owners and the players are able to see the NBA situation for what it is, there is a chance that the NHL could garner some extra airtime on ESPN they might not normally receive, which would all be in keeping for the league’s wish for more national exposure.

Sadly, all of this is contingent on the players and the owners finally striking a deal.

And with the two sides mum about any sort of "progress" made in recent meetings, it is anyone’s guess as to how long it will be before that happens.


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