Monday, January 17, 2011

Things that make go hmm...

  • Now that the Winter Classic in Spokane is over, mixed reviews are coming in for the first ever outdoor hockey game between the Spokane Chiefs and Kootenay Ice. From all accounts the fans enjoyed the game despite watching from afar. The placement of the ice in relation to the grandstand seating in the ball park made it difficult and it was suggested that more grandstand seating should have been available around the end boards. Despite the lopsided score, this was a first for the WHL and I can only see things improving now that the first one is behind them.
  • Would we ever see an outdoor game in Kelowna? Would the Apple Bowl be an ideal location? It was suggested that had the ice surface been larger at Stewart Park across from city hall a game could have been hosted there. Could you imagine the visual of a WHL game taking place on the shore of Okanagan Lake? Obviously the ice surface is smaller than regulation size at Stewart Park because of the land the city had to work with in that area.
  • Officiating. Let's go there for a moment. A real tough night for those that witnessed the Rockets loss to the Medicine Hat Tigers. Suspect calls and just poor management on the ice made for a tough evening for Zalaski and Thurston. No question these officials are going to make mistakes, but they were simply too involved in a game that could have been better settled by the two combatants. It's not the ratio of calls made that gets my goat as much as the missed infractions or phantom calls.
  • I would love to know the winning percentage when a team scores 5 on 3 and what the losing percentage is when you fail to score with the same luxury. Even in a scoreless tie, I would put my money on the team that doesn't score to lose the game. It just seems to work out that way.
  • Now that Gregg Drinnan's situation is over, life is back to normal in Kamloops. Or is it? Drinnan was reinstated and will have access to the team, but the relationship will never be the same. If it was bad to begin with, it is only worse now. Drinnan will be given the cold shoulder no matter how negative or positive his reporting is. As Drinnan said himself, he is not changing the way he covers the team, and why should he? If he turned it 'Positive Paul', the damage has been done and he will never be in the good books of the Blazers. Maybe he never was?
  • Scary crowd in Swift Current Sunday night. Under 18 hundred fans watched the Rebels beat the Broncos. My greatest fear is that number may become a common theme for the remainder of the season following the trade of Cody Eakin. The more urgent matter is getting the Broncos into the playoffs. A post season birth is critical for a small market team to pad their bottom line. No playoff revenue for three straight seasons would hurt even a large market team. Am I quietly cheering for that team? You bet. I want it to remain strong in that community for years to come. Somebody tell me it will all be OK?
  • I am interested to see what the attendance will be like in Cranbrook once Eakin is healthy enough to play. His Kootenay Ice debut isn't that one that interests me, but a game or two after that....once the honeymoon is over. Do the hockey fans in Cranbrook grasp the magnitude of that trade and the elite team GM Jeff Chynoweth has build there? As one media type said to me on the weekend, "outside of Eakin, I would be hard pressed to name three players on the Ice roster." He isn't joking. The Ice get little media attention and just go about their business with little fanfair. I will be interested to see how the community rallies around the team when we visit on February 22nd.
  • Who selects the warm up music at Kelowna Rockets home games? Is it the players? If so, an interesting, yet odd selection is played when the two teams enter the ice surface. Take a listen and let me know what you think.
  • I understand their have been some problems with the sound quality of our webcasts. The sound is often distorted or over modulated. I think we've detected the problem. It appears the mics on the camera's being used near the broadcast booth are picking up unwanted crowd noise and are picking up our voices from ten feet away. The result is a 'muddy' sound. Hopefully turning off those camera mic's will improve the sound. If you notice and difference or none whatsoever, let me know.
  • Are you getting this sneaking suspicion that the team that wins the BC Division this season won't even have 40 victories? It's happened before where a team wins under 40 games yet captures a divisional title. The Everett Silvertips won just 35 games to capture the US Division title in 2003-2004. The lowest point total I can find of a team winning a divisional crown was the Medicine Hat Tigers in 1976-77. The Tigers had just 32 wins and 76 points that season and won the Central Division. They were quickly ousted in four games in the opening round of the playoffs.

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