Quick Hits: The Through Gritted Teeth Edition

Winging It In Motown

Red Wings announce updated start times – NHL

“Based on feedback from fans, season ticket members, hockey operations staff, and club partners, we’re confident the 7:00 p.m. start for weekday games will be a welcomed change,” said Chris McGowan, President and CEO of Ilitch Sports + Entertainment. “The 7:00 p.m. first puck drop aligns with the start times of the majority of NHL clubs (27 of 32). Once the national television schedule was announced, we worked through the approval process with the NHL and Bally Sports Detroit to move these games to 7:00 p.m. We’re looking forward to feeling the energy our tremendous Red Wings fans will bring on Opening Night and throughout the upcoming season at Little Caesars Arena.”

There are only three home games that start at 7:30 now:

February 7th vs. Edmonton
March 8th vs. Chicago
March 30th vs. Carolina

No surprise that a western and central team would want to keep the time. Also possible that other schedules prevented a move.

I liked the 7:30 times. Oh well.

NHL to debut digitally enhanced dasherboards; virtual ads to replace traditional signage on arena rink boards – ESPN

“What this does is allow clubs to sell as many regional game broadcasts as they’re able to in their market,” Wachtel said. “Also, competitors come into everyone else’s market. So, every time the Rangers play in Philadelphia, Chase [Bank] has to see Wells Fargo ads coming back into their very important New York market. You can now avoid that issue, if it’s important to own your own market.”

When the game is seen through the main center ice camera, fans will see the DED system digital dasher ads. When there are close-ups and reverse angles on broadcasts, the in-arena boards will be visible, so those in-arena advertisers will get some exposure.

From a business standpoint, this is smart. From my fan-watching perspective, it’s got the potential to be good or bad and I won’t know for certain until I see it. I already hate the artificially overlaid ads behind the nets and inside the blue lines because they jiggle around and sometimes superimpose on players. If the digital board ads are a distraction because they change or move just to catch my eyes, then the advertisers supporting it are going to catch my ire.

Rick Westhead’s willingness to follow up and report on stuff like this is so important.

Are you actually going to have to put up with Red Wings fans this year? – Deadspin

Full disclosure, I’m not the most objective observer to tell you about the Red Wings or their fans. I have spent most of my adult life having four fingers waved at me from some noxious galoot who can’t wait to tell me how great Detroit is even though they’ve never left the environs of Livonia and now live in Lakeview. I have only been able to respond, in recent years, with three fingers of my own, and now it’s quite unclear that I should even do that. And it’ll be a very long time until I will have a chance to add a fourth digit, and far more questionable whether I will want to.

I’ve known the author of this piece for a long time, since before the current blogging landscape even formed. I was raised in this kind of shit-talk environment and I love it. It’s not for everybody, but this is a pretty good season preview for the Wings from a person who wants nothing more than to not have to write positive things about us.

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