Should there ever be another NHL season, Darryl Reaugh, color man for the Dallas Stars, may have hit a motherload of an idea on moving the time of the season, with the help of Tony Fireoved, Stars Executive V.P. of Corporate Sales:
It's June 19th, there's a little less than a month remaining in the regular season. The Sharks are in town. The temperature is 85 at game time. Outside of American Airlines Center, fans have been enjoying the festival atmosphere complete with bbq grilling and a live band. Inside, first place in the West is on the line.
Crazy? The gist of the the column is that NHL seasons would be contained with a single calendar year, starting some time after the Super Bowl and ending in August. No NFL to compete with, only half of the year is spent competing with the NBA (not only for eyeballs and fans' wallets, but for space in venues), and by the time the NHL season ends, MLB still has half a season to go. I'm intrigued. Too bad Gary Bettman continues to show his inability to vault the NHL higher in the collective minds' eye of sports fans in the U.S. He's allowed ESPN/ABC to slide on their television contracts (at least Fox was willing to put NHL games on the same weekend as NFL games). He's shown an inability to get the trade dispute resolved, and was forced to cancel the 2004-05 season. There's no way he would ever consider something like what Reaugh and Fireoved propose.