I haven't been able to watch much of this series, not because of the players, it's just that goddamn name, and that goddamn logo. It's worse than awful, it's offensive. I mean, using corporate logos in the stadiums is bad enough, do we have to blend marketing into the team names too? It's awful, and an embarrassment to the league. The good news is things seem to be changing.
Thanks to new owner Henry Samueli, who bought the team from Disney last year, they are dropping the adjective next season, and they may be changing the logo, but damn- it makes me wish they could have waited until next year to go deep in the playoffs. They're playing good hockey, but it ruins the experience for me when every guy on the team is dressed like the fucking mascot. Take the Carolina Hurricanes logo- it's unimpressive, but still better then having the cartoon face of Stormy the Ice Hog on the front of their shirts. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, the only way the Mighty Ducks could have pulled off that logo would have been to pack their team with goons, and lead the league in hits and fighting majors. People are less likely to criticize a cartoonish logo when there's blood all over it. Kind of a "Boy named Sue" mentality, if you will. Come to think of it, that would have been a better name than the Mighty Ducks: "The Anaheim Boys Named Sue." But don't fret, if early June rolls around and we're seeing grown men hoist the cup wearing jerseys that look like children's pajamas, at least we have this to look forward to.
Still, progress is being made, and I shouldn't bitch so much. OLN has gotten much better at presenting hockey games, actually doing what I've been saying the American national broadcasting companies should have been doing for years- letting the Canadians do it. And the supplementary programming has been better as well- the documentaries and legends of hockey shows have been great, they did an excellent special on the history and travels of the Stanley Cup, and devoted far more airtime to promoting and selling hockey than ESPN or ABC would ever be willing to do.
And as small time as OLN is, walking away from Walt Disney entirely is the best thing possible for the NHL.
A guitar player once told me " We must be vigilant, or we'll all end up working for Disney."
The NHL is a grown up's game.
Fuck the Mouse.
Now the only challenge is asking a bartender if they can put on OLN, and not getting the same look as if you'd asked them to borrow a match so you could light up a fart. Seriously, try it. You'll have better luck asking them to do math.
Either way, the Devils fight for survival tomorrow at the meadowlands, and I'll be there.
Here's hoping it'll be a good game.