Entertainment vs Development
Last week on hockeyfights.com I linked up to an article from the News-Sentinel about the UHL adopting the NHL’s rules and rules implementations and a team owner saying that the league is not faring well because of it.
When the season started in October I posted another article from the News-Sentinel about this very issue (as did Eric, Jes and others). Costa and I debated and questioned what the league should focus on: development or entertainment.
Komets owner Michael Franke answers our questions:
“There’s only one league in all of minor-league hockey that truthfully is a developmental league to the NHL, and that is the AHL,” Franke said. “We are minor leagues that are trying to create a form of entertainment for the people who live in our towns. We have to put that in the forefront. There are a very, very small percentage of players who are ever going to go to the NHL from these leagues, and we can’t be worried about that. It’s not worth sacrificing your business for some rules that turn the game into a non-interesting form of entertainment.”
It will be interesting to watch the minor leagues, especially the teams and leagues that are struggling and start to focus on entertainment. If successful, I wonder if there will be a “trickle up” effect to the NHL.