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OLNs Playoff Hockey Coverage Doesnt Make the Cut

Like many hockey fans, I was just happy that hockey was back this year. I didn't care that ESPN didn't renew their TV contract with the NHL - I figured OLN might have a few hiccups, but overall they would do fine. I was wrong. OLN has been a disaster all season long and it's not getting better.I understand that they have never done the NHL before and that they only had a few months to hire announcers, camera crews, build a set, etc.

But the worst part about it is that they haven't been improving and learning from their mistakes. The broadcasts are still as mediocre as they were on opening night.After watching the opening weekend of the 2006 NHL Playoffs, here are my thoughts:.

  • The camera angles are mediocre at best. The camera for the first 10 minutes of the Red Wings vs. Oilers Game 1 was zoomed out to the point where I could see the entire ice. This would be great except for the fact that it's IMPOSSIBLE to see the puck or read a jersey number (and no, I'm not watching on a 13" TV). They fixed it a few minutes later, but are these the things that we should have to deal with in the post season? Shouldn't they have figured out how to film a game at Joe Louis Arena during the regular season?
  • Jack Edwards should not be doing play-by-play for nationally televised playoff games.

    I miss the days of Gary Thorne/Bill Clement and Steve Levy/Darren Pang on ESPN and ESPN 2.

  • Speaking of Bill Clement, he's not a studio guy, he's a color commentator. Next season please find a studio guy so you can move Clement back to the booth where he belongs.
  • It's not OLN's fault, but not having another network (i.e.

    ESPN 2) hurts the fans. We used to get to watch two playoff games at once, now we get one.

  • The score takes up far too much of the screen on top. Do we need to see gigantic logos of each team at all times? All that does is eat up space and force OLN to put a black bar across the top of the screen so the logos can fit, wasting more space. Good luck trying to find the puck when score updates and advertisements pop up (which is quite frequently) eating up even more space.
  • With two minutes left in the Red Wings vs.

    Oilers Game 1, with the score tied at 2, the camera cut out?for at least thirty seconds. This is unacceptable. Period.

  • Game two of the double header on Friday, Anaheim vs. Calgary, was 'bonus coverage', i.e.

    OLN just broadcasted CBC's feed. Weak guys, weak. What, you can't afford to send out more than one camera crew a night? Maybe the NHL should have given coverage to a network that could handle it (of course, if the NHL didn't demand so much money from ESPN we wouldn't have this problem in the first place).

.And that was only the first weekend of coverage.

It's going to be a long playoff season?.

.Adam McFarland owns the SportsLizard.

com Network - a network of sports sites including collectibles, movies, books, video games, and more.SportsLizard.com was recently awarded honorable mention in the Microsoft Start Something Amazing Awards.

By: Adam McFarland


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