Re: RE: [hockhist] Re: Ice Guys Finish Last
> From: "William Underwood" <wausport@...>Of course, a lot of the differences between the old-line (pre-1960) ballparks were responses to the
challenges imposed by the site. Fenway Park looks like it does mostly because it had to -- it was on a
weird-shaped plot of land. Even Expectoration Stadium in Toronto had its site-induced quirks -- the
outfield seats were covered, while the main grandstand wasn't. And for many years, thanks to the
dimensions of a CFL field, it could claim to own the world's largest piece of Astroturf.
But I doubt anyone in Detroit said, "Gee, it'd be neat to have a flagpole in play in centre field." Without
looking into it, my guess is someone decided in the dead-ball era that no one would ever hit a ball 440
feet, so that was as good a place as any to put it. The vines at Wrigley just kinda happened. Charlie
Comiskey was ahead of the curve when he insisted on a symmetrical outfield, and I wonder how much
charm White Sox Park really had before Bill Veeck got a hold of it.
Some of the old rinks developed organically, too. It was a few seasons before the Spectrum got its
uppermost tier. Before that, the ceiling might not have seemed as low. (Well, actually, it was pretty
darned low in the winter of '68, but that's another story!) And I believe the brick was from a
Pennsylvania quarry. The end blues at MLG, which were a great place to watch a game as long as the
puck wasn't in your end of the rink, were tacked on after the city wouldn't let Ballard and Staff Smythe
extend part of the building, cantilever-fashion, over Carlton Street.
Maybe, in time, each of the current generation of hyperarenas will acquire its own touches. But I'm not
optimistic. I believe they sampled the old Barton organ from Chicago Stadium so that the electronic
keyboard at United Center would have its sound, but what they didn't seem to get is that, with an organ,
the building itself is part of the instrument. (Nowhere was this more literal than in Chicago Stadium.)
The siren at the Bell Centre is a nice connection with the Forum. (I like the buzzer at Madison Square
Garden, too. It has a sound unlike any other I've heard.) I have mixed emotions about the entrance at
the ACC: it's kind of neat that the building has a lobby, but Toronto already has too many buildings that
incorporate the facade of the thing they replaced.
Oh, I'd better stop this. I'm sure I seem a curmudgeon (and apparently not for the first time). There's
one thing I will say about the modern buildings -- they may lack atmosphere, but at least you don't have
to pee in a trough.
> Date: Mon, 3 Mar 2003 15:09:38 -0500Lloyd Davis Publishing Services
> To: <email@example.com>
> Subject: RE: [hockhist] Re: Ice Guys Finish Last
> It is interesting in this respect, baseball has always allowed for each
> building to have it's own idiosyncrasies and character. In hockey we
> once had that too. Knowing them is a part of home advantage and add a
> certain element. In hockey we didn't learn form them. In the 70'd they
> went to "cookie cutter" designs and in the end found that fans like the
> unique fields. We have went to cookie cutters too!
201-488 Danforth Avenue
Toronto, ON M4K 1P6
416-465-6999 (tel.) /// 416-462-0326 (fax)
- And even with Clement the ratings are subterrainian. It all comes back
to the game. People don't watch TV for listening content, it is a VISUAL
medium. Hell, many people watch games in bars or other places where you
can't hear over the music or the noise. And bars FILL UP for football,
and are dead for hockey. You can't have a special hockey night, hell, if
half of the patrons realize you will have hockey on, they'll go
elsewhere if there is another event to watch! You can build ENITIRE
NIGHTS around football, boxing, baseball playoffs, key hoop game but not
hockey. And the announcers don't even come into play!
The announcers are just another lame thing to blame. You could have two
chimps scream during an NFL game and still have it sell. In fact, the
NFL experimented with NO announcers once and the ratings STILL were
decent. Hockey can bring in Al Micheals or whomever but the ratings stay
static, somewhere between the late unlamented XFL and a TV blight that
wiped out every cathode ray tube in the country.
From: James Karkoski [mailto:austin@...]
Sent: Saturday, March 08, 2003 9:34 AM
Subject: Re: [hockhist] Re: Ice Guys Finish Last
>Subject: [hockhist] Re: Ice Guys Finish LastI think the difference is that all the football guys, at least the ones
>Sent: 20.3.5 9:23 AM
>Received: 03.3.6 11:28 AM
>From: jpdornberger <jpdornberger@...>,
>--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, mtlhockey@a... wrote:
>> In a message dated 3/4/03 11:36:44 AM Pacific Standard Time,
>> jpdornberger@c... writes:
>> > I don't understand beating up ESPN.
>> > The product is THE GAME.
>> > THE GAME is not selling.
>> > 90% of the NFL announcers are horrible too but people watch THE
>> > GAME. You can say the same things about them as you say about
>> > Melrose and Co. (Just don't dis our Billy Clement!)
>> I dont agree with that at all. I watch football and for the most
>> broadcasters are fine. In the NHL they are HORRIBLE!! Gary Thorne
>> pronounced or does not know the names of players at least 10 times
>> When Pat Summerall did it once in a game they said he should retire.
>> Of course, no one watches hockey so they dont have any money to pay
>You keep saying Gary Thorne over and over again.
>Well, I give you Pat Sumerall, Don Criqui, Dan Dierdorf, Randy Cross,
>Deion Sanders, Cris Collinsworth and even OJ Simpson.
sitiing in the broadcast booths, have personalities and a screen
prescence. The only one who does on the ESPN hockey telecasts is Bill
The only way I can explain Brian Engblom is that ESPN is paying the NHL
back for moving out of Hartford.
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