Puck the Media’s NHL Tournament of Announcers, Round 1, Match 8, Danny Gallivan Bracket: Howie Rose vs. Mark Lee






First of all, Friday’s result: Rick Jeanneret plows his way through to round two, beating Anaheim/Versus guy John Ahlers.  Now we have one of our favorite matchups of the first round: Islanders (and Mets, but well, that doesn’t really count if you don’t have a Mets bias, which we do) play-by-play man Howie Rose vs. CBC’s Mark Lee.  I’m curious to see how the voting goes on this one.  Polls close at 5:30 PM Monday.  Enjoy!


Greg Logan’s Irresponsible, Biased Potshot at Mike Mottau

Now, we make no secret as always that we are Devils fans, so we’ll try and look at this as objectively as we can and, because we agree that Mike Mottau should have been suspended for the hit above, perhaps we can.  The New Jersey defenseman was out of position for an attempted hit on Franz Nielsen and caught him up high, which caused injuries to the young Islander forward.

There has been some anger over the logic behind Colin Campbell’s two-game suspension of Mottau.  Many look at the fact that Nielsen is out 8-12 weeks for Mottau’s hit.  We’re okay with the length.  Mottau is a first-time offender with no history of dirty play.  We don’t think it was intention to hit Nielsen illegally, we think he got caught out of position and still wanted to make a hit, so he went out of his way to hit Nielsen somewhere, and got him in the head.  That’s our honest opinion of that.

But there has been some bile thrown around because of it.  None more angered than Newsday’s Islanders writer Greg Logan.  He posted this on his blog this morning:


Unfortunately, the message didn’t take. TV cameras caught Mottau laughing about the play in the penalty box. It must have been the guilty enjoyment of a man who knew he got away with one. It certainly wasn’t the sense of deep remorse Weight expressed immediately on the ice after he ran into Sutter.


Woah.  Well, we watched that game too, and we found the shot he’s talking about.  Concentrate on the last 10 seconds of this clip post-jump, and it’ll come to a shot of Mottau’s “laughing”.

Okay, Let’s Talk About This Like Adults: “How ESPN Nearly Destroyed the NHL on TV” or “Why the NHL Should Never Go Back to ESPN”


“Okay, Let’s Talk About This Like Adults” is a new, semi-regular feature (Which really should be the trigger words of the “Puck the Media Drinking Game”) in which we talk about actual factual serious issues concerning the NHL in the media.  Like what we really promised this blog would be about from the start, before it essentially became pictures of Lindsay Soto and Conan O’Brien.  We even stop using the royal “We” for a post.

A couple of posts this week have grabbed a lot of people’s attention, and mine as well – when I plucked them from their original sources.  First, there was VERSUS President Jamie Davis’ response to critics of the network, including NHLPA head Paul Kelly.  Then, there was last night’s breaking story from Al Strachan of CBC’s “Hotstove” segment of Hockey Night in Canada that ESPN and the NHL are talking reunion, with – as I said in the post – differing opinions of whom the World Wide Leader would replace: VERSUS or NBC.  CBC (and NBC) analyst Mike Milbury claimed NBC had an offer of another 1-year extension on the table, while columnist Scott Morrisonn asserted that NBC “wants nothing to do” with the NHL.  This is one of those rare cases where Milbury (an NBC employee) might actually have the better info.

This sort of led me back to a blog posting from a year and a half ago that I look at every so often.  It’s from the great Sports Media Watch blog.  It’s titled “How Disney Outfoxed the NHL” and it quotes quite a few articles from media columnists about the new negotiations between Disney, FOX and the league for TV rights back in 1998, when FOX and ESPN’s contracts were set to expire after next season.  It included this, via Sports Business Daily:

A 15% drop in playoff ratings ‘hasn’t soured Fox on the NHL,’ according to USA TODAY’s Rudy Martzke, who writes that with a two-year contract option starting in 2000, Fox ‘likely will opt for televising all Stanley Cup final games.’ In the current deal, Fox televises Games 1, 5 and 7, with ESPN carrying the rest. Fox Exec Producer Ed Goren said it’s ‘possible’ Fox could begin showing all the finals as early as next year [1999], as talks “are taking place.’ But ESPN spokesperson Mike Soltys implied that the network would like to keep the finals package until 2000, adding ‘We’re happy with this package as it stands.”

As Paulsen goes on to say “FOX wanted to do what no U.S. broadcast network has ever done — that is, broadcast the entire Stanley Cup Finals, giving it the credibility of the NBA Finals or World Series.”  

But that’s when Disney came in and sent the NHL on a path for TV rock bottom that it’s just beginning to crawl out of.

Read more of this post

What This Week Will Look Like (aka “A Programming Note”)

We’ll be doing a mad dash to vacation, in full-on blogging mode today-Wednesday (Including a Tournament of Announcers Post at 5:30).  Then we are taking the entire weekend off.  We’re not even gonna’ look at this thing.  Unless we get in that whole “Hey, the NHL should throw some more games on Thanksgiving” post mood.  Anyway, regular blogging today through Wednesday, then a bit of a break.  Here are the scheduled “Holiday Hours” for Puck the Media:

Thanksgiving: Off Thursday, Nov. 27 – Sunday, November 30
Christmas: Off Wednesday, Dec. 24 – Sunday, December 28 
New Year’s: Off Wednesday, Dec. 31 (Remember: Winter Classic Liveblog New Year’s Day!)

We hope those of you looking for some good hockey blogging this Sunday will enjoy reading Puck the Media.  Thanks for reading as always.