Your NHL Awards Open Thread

NHL Awards Ceremony, Live from Las Vegas
7:30 PM ET
CBC/VERSUS 

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NHL Getting it Right By Livening Up Dull Awards Show

Now we like Stompin’ Tom and Ron MacLean as much as anyone, but we don’t believe we’re the first to say that the NHL Awards Show had fallen into a serious rut.  Year after year un-promoted and dumped off on ESPN2 or VERSUS (and let us not forget the various debacles VERSUS has produced as far as getting the show to air) and long mentioned as “Oh, that?  How long till the draft and UFA day?” by many hockey fans.

So let’s give the NHL some credit when it comes to mixing things up.  It appears MacLean has been dropped as host in favor of what appears to be no host (Yay, no more hackey hockey jokes!) and more pizazz.  Snoop Dogg and Michael Buble?  Sure.  A taped bit from Denis Leary?  Why not?  Chaka Khan?  Save me, Chaka Khan, Chaka Khan!  

Oh, and did we mention: Vegas!  Getting NHL events out of good ol’ boy haunts like Toronto (Which had hosted it forever, save a couple years ago Vancouver) is exactly what the league needs to liven up it’s image.  Now, will the proposed three years in Vegas become stale?  Perhaps, but it’s one of the greatest cities in the world to consistently reinvent yourself, so let’s hope the NHL finds out what works and what doesn’t and comes up with something new for the city this year.

Overall, we’re about as excited as you can be for an NHL Awards show.  We’re going to try not to tear up when we see Pat Burns.  We kind of hope Zach Parise doesn’t win the Lady Bing.  Oh, and Chaka Khan!  Join us for an open thread starting at 5:30!

Some Book Keeping and a Question For the Readers

We updated the VERSUS College Football schedule for ’09, in case you’re interested.  Still some holes and TBD’s there, but VERSUS stands to have another season as a legitimate college football network, though some of the games may be lacking, there’s always a chance at getting USC again.  Also, so far there’s nothing that weekend of Oct. 2-3 that could stop VERSUS from airing NHL Premiere games, assuming that they’ll take place at Noon and 2:30 PM ET again.  All VERSUS has is a 7PM ET Pac-10 Game.  What they should do is air hockey at 1 & 4 PM ET, then head to football.  Trust us, VERSUS, having 9-10 hours of live, big-time sports programming is good for you.  

If only you could tie it all together with a legitimate sports studio show.  Or even studio shows dedicated to the two sports you’re airing.  If I was VERSUS, I’d slate the day like this:

1:00 Chicago vs. Florida
4:00 Detroit vs. St. Louis
7:00 Pac-10 Football
10:00 College Football Central
10:30 Hockey Central

Then you move into your garbage “Sports Soup” and whatnot.  Hell, if you have a PBR event and need to air it at 10, even better, just move the football and hockey shows back two hours.  It’s not too hard to come up with these things, but it’s another to execute them.

Now, a question for you guys and something we kind of missed last week.  Marc Crawford leaves CBC for the Stars.  Who takes his place?  Does CBC settle for Greg Millen?  Or do they go out and make a big hire?  Your call, boys and girls.