It’s not news that hockey is a staple of the Canadian lifestyle. Whether everyone likes it or not, it’s stitched into the fabric of our national identity up here. Where and how we consume “our” game is huge news. (And while it’s not actually “ours,” best believe that’s the perception up here.)
So, when the collective We found out that Rogers bought the next 12 years of NHL rights for 5.232 BILLION dollars (ho-hum), the scramble for information began. WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN, men and women by the thousands screamed from their knees at the sky. If you’re one of those folks with scuffs on your pants from doing that, you can check out our story stack that’s compiling the news as it rolls in here.
But from a less newsy perspective, I wanted to look at how this actually affects the viewing experience of hockey fans north of the border. Because a quick look at the navel-gazing side is interesting, but not that relevant to most outside the media. Here’s a quick look: the rug has been pulled out from under a lot of great hockey people at TSN and CBC. It’s going to be musical chairs for them this upcoming summer, but while a lot of people may be hurt by the changes, there’s certainly not going to be less hockey jobs, so the qualified will almost certainly land on their feet (y’know, with SportsNet). Both TSN (Curling! CFL!) and CBC (News and stuff!) will likely survive, but in their own ways. Read the rest of this entry »