Skip to main content

Battle of the Best in the West

Woohoo! I've scored access to a suite for tonight's Anaheim Ducks/Nashville Predators tilt at the GEC. Injuries dominate the story here, as Tomas Vokoun is expected to return to action for Nashville, while Anaheim misses J.S. Giguere and Chris Pronger, among others. Although struggling some lately, the Ducks did top Detroit 4-2 at home on Sunday, and having also won 5 of their last 6 against the Preds, Anaheim should be confident coming in.

Frankly, I think this game just means a lot more to the Predators at this point. Despite an admirable record, Nashville is merely .500 against the top 10 teams in the NHL, suggesting that they're still earning a place among the elite of the league, and the pressure on this team to succeed is mounting. With the NFL season finally over here in the Music City, the Predators have their best chance yet at capturing the hearts and minds of sports fans in Middle Tennessee. Much has been written about disappointing attendance figures in certain NHL markets, and Nashville is usually cited as a city that probably doesn't deserve an NHL team. Yes, they did have to threaten a TV blackout during the playoffs last year in a desperate attempt to sell the building out, and the numbers so far this year have been less than spectacular. However, this is really the first season that local fans have had reason to believe in a legitimate contender, rather than a "little engine that could"-type of team that merely hopes to make the playoffs.

In order to make good on that potential, however, the Predators need to win the Central Division, and make a strong showing in the playoffs. There's no better way for this team to start building momentum than to beat the Ducks tonight, and make a run at Western Conference supremacy over the next couple weeks.

Popular posts from this blog

How I'm Trying To Make Money Sports Blogging

To kick off this series of articles general sports-blogging articles here at OTF Classic, I think it's best to start with a comment that Brad left here last week, after I shared my goals for 2012, which include specific revenue targets:
I considered diving into the world of internet marketing myself, but I felt that my friends would hate me for bugging them about stuff. I mean, it's pretty low-risk high-reward, so it's tempting. I wouldn't mind reading about tips on how to maximize impact of blogging in general to make it a legitimate income source. Trying to make money at sports blogging can be a very touchy subject - for the vast majority of us, this is an activity we pursue to both exercise our creativity and share our love of the game, whether it's hockey, football, badminton, whatever, with fellow fans. Mixing that personal conversation with a commercial message can turn people off, especially if it becomes too intrusive for the reader.

It's not unreasonabl…

Canadian Baloney, starring James Mirtle

A tireless refrain from the Canadian media is that Nashville is an absolute failure as a hockey market, and failing to move the team north of the border is an exercise in folly by the NHL.

Our latest exhibit comes from James Mirtle, usually one of the more thoughtful hockey bloggers extant:
But Nashville, quite simply, has proven it cannot sustain an NHL hockey team. Even with the lowest ticket prices in the entire league (I know: I've looked into flying there for a game or two) and a ridiculously forgiving arena lease, the team has had attendance issues despite having one of the best records in the league.

It's not a matter of Canadians not wanting teams in the southern U.S.; I've argued time and again in favour of teams like Dallas and Tampa Bay that have supported their teams and really brought something to the table in terms of bringing news fans and new energy to the game. That's a good thing.

The Predators, however, are not that, not in the beginning and certainly no…

Get Your NHL Super Schedule 2008-9 Right Here!

Click here for the 2009-10 NHL Super Schedule, at my new site,!

The NHL announced the 2008-9 Regular Season schedule today, so of course, it's time right here to publish my very own NHL Super Schedule 2008-9 as well.

For those unfamiliar with what I did last year, the NHL Super Schedule is a spreadsheet that I put together and make publicly available via Google Documents*. It includes an entry for each game in each team's 82-game regular season schedule, with additional information such as how far that team has had to travel since its last game, how many days have passed since that previous game, and various statistics relative to the opponent that evening, such as 2007-8 Winning Percentage, Goals Per Game, Goals Against Per Game, etc. For example, you can total the distance that each team will travel during the upcoming season, or find who plays the most back-to-back games. Check out which team faces the toughest opposing offenses, or which power plays…