Hello South Florida and everywhere else, I'm Bird and flat out exhausted......
Litterbox Cats says that the lack of a consistent winning streak is the reason that fans don't show up at the BB&T center for Panther games. While I agree that winning would help, I'm thinking there is way more to the attendance story than just the team record. Face it, this is not hockey country. Even the snowbirds that live here during the winter are spending their time doing things that are not hockey related. We have visitors and residents from real hockey towns. Detroit, Boston, Philly and Pittsburgh along with New York combine with many Canadians to form a strange mix of potential hockey mecca......but it's just not happening yet.
I still blame part of it on radio stations like ESPN West Palm at 106.3. The big host, Evan Cohan is a self admitted hockey ignorant. In addition he doesn't just ignore the sport, he mocks it. Few on the staff have a clue about the game so the small amount of commentary is lame, to be kind. The AM station that broadcasts the Cats is hard to tune in here in Palm Beach county so I can't comment on the coverage or the daytime talk.
Look, in NY WFAN reluctantly covered the Rangers back when they started but the loyal Ranger, Islander & Devils fans still called in. The overnight guy, Steve Summers capitalized on this by talking puck a lot. Even Mike & The Mad Dog (Evan's heros) had no choice but to talk about the game. Pete from Uniondale, a caller who was often featured was in fact Pete Laviolette the head coach of the Islanders. After the 1994 Cup win by the Rangers the station improved on the coverage but they never really wanted to. Ratings was always used as an excuse and since I worked in radio it's hard for me to argue. However, it's a choice......and here in Florida the media chooses to ignore the game. Perhaps only a Cup will turn the tide and that's one tall order. They did it in Tampa Bay, we can do it here.
The Cats are in Toronto tonight.
Panthers make a minor trade.
OK, I'm running on empty. My health just doesn't let me push as hard as I once could. I don't recover well and my pain levels are high. I know I need to take care of myself and smoking and drinking are not very healthy ways of getting better. I need some rest so I'm not playing golf this weekend and I'm just going to lay on the couch. This means I may not be posting for a few days. Don't worry.....I'll be back and hopefully with some energy.