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Thread: Will the hockey lockout be good news for the Raptors?

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    Raptors Republic Rookie Ion66's Avatar
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    Default Will the hockey lockout be good news for the Raptors?

    If the lockout happens like it looks it will, do the Raps come out winners in this? On the heels of an NBA lockout that may have cost the team some of it's casual fans, the NHL looks to be dug in for a lockout of it's own. New Ownership of MLSE by Bell/Rogers for the first time as well. With the new owners having only one product to sell in the near future, is this a benefit to us? Also, with major Canadian sports channels having nothing much with a puck to show off, do the Raps get extra attention? On the plus side, more attention means more fans turned on to Raptors, and basketball itself. On the downside, we're in a pivotal year, with lots of new faces and a team, much like the Leafs, hoping to end a long playoff drought. Does the extra scrutiny help the Raps, or put even more pressure on them to perform? Do you see us nearing the All-Star break, with hockey still a ways off and MLSE putting more effort into making the Raps a marketable/winning product than they might have with the Leafs competing for fan attention? Is this a win for us, or too much attention on a young team that's not ready for the full spotlight?

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    I haven't done a scientific poll but I find that the hockey fans I know are very loyal to their sport and, for the most part, have little interest in basketball. TSN has already started running Canada -USSR reruns and probably have more classic hockey matches in the vault in case there is a lengthy lockout.

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Puffer's Avatar
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    I have actually already read some comments along the lines of "With NHL likely out for the season I will probably watch more Raptors games.

    Not every fan is a 16 year old kid. If you work, are married, have a couple of small kids, and have ANY interests at all outside of sports, then no way you have the time to watch 3-4 Raptors games a week and 3-4 Leaf games a week, unless you have a PVR and never watch any shows with your significant other. Even with a PVR it takes 1.5 hours to watch a game. Forget overtime games, interrupting phone calls, refreshing the drink, making popcorn or getting your fave snack, rewinding to watch in slow mo, whatever. Who has two hours a day for watching sports? (Okay, some of you, but not if you are also playing any a couple of times a week and travelling an hour each way to work for your 8 hour a day job).

    So my essential point is that, without the NHL, it will be a lot easier for puck fans to sample or even dive a little deeper into the Raptors or the NBA.

    I bet a lot of Leaf fans will take advantage of the gaps in their TV viewing time to check out the Raps now.

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    What I get from hockey fans is that they consider basketball not to be a "manly" sport, not macho enough, "they wear short pants" and comments of that ilk.

    Then there is always the one that "basketball isn't worth watching except for the last two minutes."

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    Raptors Republic All-Star wallz's Avatar
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    Quote stretch wrote: View Post
    What I get from hockey fans is that they consider basketball not to be a "manly" sport, not macho enough, "they wear short pants" and comments of that ilk.

    Then there is always the one that "basketball isn't worth watching except for the last two minutes."
    I hear that a lot too, and it only comes from the ones that haven't played basketball before.
    I think most hockey fans wiill resort to football before basketball, but I'm guessing there will be a bit more viewers nonetheless

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    It won't really change anything, each local TV station has a right to a portion of the Raptor games and can exclusively air them.

    If TSN gets really desperate, they'll probably start showing B-list sports and reruns of old "classics".

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    Raptors Republic Rookie Ion66's Avatar
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    Aside from maybe getting more hockey starved fans, does anybody here wonder if the new MLSE ownership might make an effort to help the Raps win that they might not have in a non NHL lockout season?

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    Without a doubt Raps will get more attention and business compared to a normal season. Overall though MLSE will suffer huge losses as Hockey is their main product. Raps can capitalise on the opportunity by going above the Cap at trade deadline to try and go deep into the playoffs. If I'm right they failed to do so the last time there was an NHL lockout.
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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    Considering that the Leafs are owned by the same entity and that team is a big cash cow sitting on the sideline the net effect isn't going to be positive. All the money is going to the same place and sure they may get better attendance numbers for the Raptors but at the end of the day less money is being made.

    I don't think the NHL lockout will have any real impact to the on court Raptors product.

    The media attention/scrutiny should be magnified. That should be interest for a guy like J.V. who already has too great an expectation placed on him for his rookie campaign.

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    Raptors Republic Starter James Ballswin (Realizar)'s Avatar
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    First, if the NHL and NHLPA get a deal done by the end of November, the preceding lockout will have had no meaningful increase in media coverage on the Raps.

    However, if the NHL lockout continues into December and any time into the new year, the Raps will have a golden opportunity to generate an enormous amount of national publicity and significantly increase the interest of casual bball fans across the country IF they can:

    1) get off to a hot start and have several win streaks for varying lengths;

    2) avoid having too many losing streaks, especially extended losing steaks; and,

    3) maintain a .500+ winning percentage for the first two months of the season and begin the new year ranked 7th or 8th place in the conference standings.

    Forecasted Analysis of Possible Outcomes:

    Best Case
    If the Raps accomplish all three objectives, both their Canadian and American media attention would swell dramatically crearing the highest level of excitment and momemtum experienced by the team since the VC era.

    Expected Case
    If they begin the new year ranked <3 games out of the eight place in the standing, the team would gain positive, but no greater national media coverage as this result is what is expected of them; it would likely attract an increased percentage of casual fans into following the team's progress through the first few weeks of the new year to the All-Star break.

    Worst Case
    If the Raps don't accomplish any of these objectives, than the team will have performed below management's expectations. This would lead to on onslaught of generalized, negative media commentary about team, along with a gradual shifting in the editorial focus away from the team to an observational analysis in the performance of key individual players; a mix of apathy and ridicule from hockey traditionalist. Overall interest would diminish among a percentage of the team dedicated fan base.

    In terms of determining whether the NHL lockout will have an impact on the Raptors, the lockout will need to continue for at least three full months in order to truly have one.
    Last edited by James Ballswin (Realizar); Sun Sep 16th, 2012 at 08:11 AM.

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    Raptors Republic Starter minks77's Avatar
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    I can't remember the Raps getting any extra attention last lockout. What I do remember is being flabbergasted that the talking heads kept nearly the same pecking order with NHL lockout "news", even when they was no new news, as options A, B, C followed by opinion pieces, followed by a discussion piece and THEN the rest of the sports agenda. If anything it was even worse than the regular sports news cycle because at least hockey highlights can be fun to watch while waiting for them to get to their 2 minutes of NBA coverage.

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Puffer's Avatar
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    Quote minks77 wrote: View Post
    ...What I do remember is being flabbergasted that the talking heads kept nearly the same pecking order with NHL lockout "news", even when they was no new news, as options A, B, C followed by opinion pieces, followed by a discussion piece and THEN the rest of the sports agenda...
    Is it just me or have I actually heard NBA coverage on the CBC lately? Seems as though they have bumped Raptors news to a slightly higher spot than they previously occupied.

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    Raptors Republic Starter minks77's Avatar
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    I actually liked it when the CBC would show the occasional Raps game. Great quality broadcast (visuals) but in need of getting basketball people to be the analysts and such but they did a very good job and much better than TSN (Terrible Sports Network)

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    The best time to go to a shopping mall is during an Olympic gold medal hockey match involving Canada. Very little traffic on the road, no line ups.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Quote stretch wrote: View Post
    Then there is always the one that "basketball isn't worth watching except for the last two minutes."
    I never understood this argument. It can be said about ALL sports. How many soccer games end in a draw? How many football games come down to a 2-minute drill? How many hockey games are decided in sudden death?

    Pure ignorance by the puck heads.
    "I don't lie. I willfully participate in a campaign of misinformation." - Fox Mulder

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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    I never understood this argument. It can be said about ALL sports. How many soccer games end in a draw? How many football games come down to a 2-minute drill? How many hockey games are decided in sudden death?

    Pure ignorance by the puck heads.
    It is about the way some puck heads identify with their sport and it's culture and their perception that hockey is a "Canadian" sport and that it is faster, tougher, and superior to any other winter sport.

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Puffer's Avatar
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    Quote stretch wrote: View Post
    ...their perception that ... it is faster, tougher, and superior to any other winter sport.
    Tougher and faster than nude sumo wrestling in the snow? I don't think so.

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    I grew up a hockey fan and player. I was taught to believe that basketball as not as good of a sport as hockey. Mostly because it's more or less impossible for a person that doesn't understand the game well to pick up on what things are fouls and what are not. As a hockey person, I was like, "so they can't touch each other at all?" It was confusing.

    I became a basketball fan through watching the basketball team from my high school, which was composed mostly of my friends. I became much more clear on the rules and strategy at this time. By the time high school was over, I had quit playing organized hockey. For the duration of my later high school and university years, I was equal hockey and basketball fan.

    Then the hockey lockout happened in 2005-06 and all I had was basketball. I became a much more hardcore Raps fan and never looked back. The NBA lockout last year didn't have the same effect. I just waited for the season to start was didn't even remember the lockout by the new year. I didn't even watch a hockey game last year until the playoffs (this was likely aided by the fact that my team, the Canadiens, we a fucking atrocity this year). The potential for more lost NHL games this season doesn't even register a blip for me.

    Based on my personal experience, I think the Raps could gain a few hardcore fans (like me) if hockey goes away from the entire year. But the more likely scenario is that hockey is back before the new year and most fans will just wait it out like we did last season. Not much of an impact.

    And really, if Leafs fans were going to jump ship then 1) It would have happened by now; and 2) They would definitely need to get away from MLSE.

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    Quote Puffer wrote: View Post
    Tougher and faster than nude sumo wrestling in the snow? I don't think so.
    lol .....what about nude super model short track speed skating?

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Puffer's Avatar
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    Quote stretch wrote: View Post
    lol .....what about nude super model short track speed skating?
    That would be a hard sport.

    :-)

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