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June 7, 2015 2:35 pm  #1

Stanley Cup On The Radio - Why Isn't It?

I should start this by saying I don't follow hockey and could care less about the NHL. Still, as a longtime media guy, I can't help but wonder how what is arguably the most popular finale in Canadian sports is all but absent from over-the-air broadcast radio. Yes, it's Tampa vs. Chicago, so it could be a case of who cares? But people listen to the Super Bowl, the Grey Cup or the World Series on the radio when their teams don't make it and all those games are always carried somewhere.

Rogers owns the rights to the NHL, but they also have Jays commitments on the Fan, so they've shunted most of the playoff games to their website when there's a conflict. Which means if you're not around a TV set or a web stream in your car, you likely can't hear it. 

Hockey has its challenges in much of the U.S., so you'd think it might be important to make it available to what fans there are down there. Yet no one is carrying it south of the border, either. Buffalo, a big hockey town, has three sports stations. Not one of them has the play-by-play. According to a recent column in the Buffalo News, only Sirius XM has the games, which certainly limits the number of people who can listen.

I can't remember the last time Canada's game was so absent from Canada's airwaves. I'm actually not missing it. But I can't help but wonder at the disappearance this year of hockey's biggest event on the radio.    


June 7, 2015 11:37 pm  #2

Re: Stanley Cup On The Radio - Why Isn't It?

I hang around a lot of people interested in sports, both at work and elsewhere in my life  Absolutely no one has complained about this. None of the sports blogs I read have mentioned it either.

If someone's that interested once the home team has left the building, they're watching TV. Period.


June 8, 2015 1:41 am  #3

Re: Stanley Cup On The Radio - Why Isn't It?

RadioActive wrote:

I don't follow hockey and could care less about the NHL

Because they also care less?


June 8, 2015 9:16 am  #4

Re: Stanley Cup On The Radio - Why Isn't It?

Sports is such a difficult thing to judge.  As the saying goes (over and over) Toronto isn't a sports town, it isn't a hockey or basketball town, it's a Leafs and Raptors town, and as soon as they're out, the ratings go with them.  (And then there's the jays, but that's only when they're in the opening game, or the final game of the world series.)

I remember in early 2001 Q107 subscribed to a system called, I believe, MobileTrack.  It was a series of recievers across the 401 that allowed stations to peek into the cars driving underneath and see which FM stations people were listening to.  Part of the problem with Stern was that everyone listened, but nobody would admit to it in a diary.  This was a way to show the real numbers that were out there.  One morning, the #1 station, with a bullet, was Chin FM.  It was the absolute market leader.  It was airing a soccer game, and had I not seen the report I would have figured someone was exagerating to make a point.  But the next morning, the station wasn't even a blip on the excel sheet.

I hate sports .


Last edited by ig (June 8, 2015 9:33 am)

Madness takes its toll.  Please have exact change.