Friday, April 06, 2007

Kudos To Jeff Millar and Bill Hinds

You gotta love Tank McNamara because nobody does sports satire better than they do. And if you've been following strip all week, you would know that they've been skewering the NHL over fighting all week. It makes you wonder if the Ultimate Fighting on Ice (UFOI) fans still think "there's no such thing as bad publicity" because you know these guys don't realize that the comics are laughing at the NHL, not with them. Today's punchline would be the funniest yet if the guy hadn't been lying in a pool of his own blood. Sometimes satire gets too close to real life.

Anyway, it has been a big week for the UFOI Fans. They feel emboldened by the scientific poll that says hockey fans like hockey fights. They're pointing to this poll and saying "game over."

Not so fast there Skippy...
  1. The survey was exclusively Canadian. While some bloggers dream about rolling the NHL entirely into Canada that isn't going to happen. While there is a great clamoring for more expansion/franchise relocation into Canada that isn't likely to happen either because the Canadian market is pretty much tapped out. The NHL will be successful if and ONLY if it can grow its U.S. fanbase. So while taking an exclusively Canadian poll is nice, it doesn't even come close to providing a blueprint for the future success of the NHL.
  2. The poll was conducted of self-described "avid hockey fans." In other words they "were preaching to the converted." So how does this debunk the survey? Well, hockey's TV ratings are down even in Canada so it is clear that, even in Canada, self described "avid hockey fans" are not enough to support the sport. Let's conduct a survey of people who are not "avid hockey fans" and figure out why they aren't paying attention to the NHL. "Preaching to the converted" isn't going to grow the game. Do it in the United States and it will have even more credibility.
  3. The Venerable Off Wing Opinion did a survey somewhat similar to the Decima survey last week. However I noticed in the 11 people already at the Caps-Penguin Scum game (which was sold out BTW), not a single one said that they themselves would no longer attend hockey games if fighting was banned. A couple of people THOUGHT that attendance MIGHT drop, but not a single person in that video said they themselves wouldn't bother coming to games anymore. The most common excuse for keeping fighting is the "policing the game" factor which I already have the answer for. (Not to toot my own horn mind you...) However like the last point, I would be more interested in a "fan on the street interview" of people who aren't already hockey fans than of people who are already in the arena before a hockey game starts. But the admission of hockey fans that they personally would not stop coming to games if fighting was banned is very, very telling.
  4. The Neanderthals over at Ultimate Fighting on Ice tell us and over and over again how fighting regularly gets a 80-90% approval rate on unscientific internet based polls. And this is "PROOF! PROOF! I tell you that hockey "needs" fighting or else it isn't hockey." Well here's a scientific poll conducted exclusively in Canada (where hockey is the National Pastime) of only self-described "avid hockey fans" and they can only muster 76%. While that's nothing to sneeze at, it is a far cry from the 80-90% we keep hearing out of these goons.

I was willing to give these clowns the benefit of hearing what the UFOI Fans cult leader, Don Cherry, had to say about this survey before responding in kind. But today is kind of slow as I have the day off from work. I'm just trying to kill some time here folks. It has also been awhile since I've done one of my anti-fighting posts as well, so I was due. But the fact that the UFOI fans have to constantly defend themselves and their blood lust continues to be very, very telling.



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