Something Called the NHL Cancels Entire Preseason

Seattle Still Not Getting An NHL Team, Media Hangs On To Every Word Willy Wonka Says

lol labor disputes
Via ABC News, AP Photo/ The Seattle Times,  John Lok
Insert something thoughtful about the Oilers-to-Seattle mess currently in the news here. 

It's all already been said.  It was said way before it was even officially said.  Oilers to Seattle: not going to happen.  Any team, at this present moment, and over the course of the next two years, to Seattle: not going to happen.  Very few people in the media understand this, apparently, or just need something to write about.  PucKChaser gets it.  I'm sure a good chunk of you Kansas Citians out there get it.

Why is this so hard to understand?

As similar as Seattle's situation with the Oilers is to KC's situation with the Penguins was, they differ in one major regard.  The Sprint Center wanted (still wants...?) a tenant, any tenant.  NBA, NHL, the exclusive home of Grave Digger.  Anything.  Seattle just wants the NBA.  After the Sonics/Thunder divorced Seattle, Seattle has been trying to get back a team that kind of looks like the Sonics, but without the bitchy in-laws, and maybe a little more blonde than brunette this time.  They also would prefer nice teeth, but it's certainly not a deal breaker.  An NHL team – after an NBA team, mind you – would be bully for them.  Certainly not enough to build an arena around, though, not matter how much potential she has or how many rings she owns.

This is all I can say to Daryl Katz – owner of the Oilers and the least impressive Martin Short rug I have ever seen: At least make sure the city you are using as leverage actually wants a hockey team before you indeed use them as leverage.

There are some smart thinkers in the ranks of the owners, boy howdy.  Theorists, really.

Since it doesn't get much more black and white as that,  here is one of my early forays into .gif making.  It's Dave Tippett swearing after an LA Kings goal in the Western Conference final.  Because it's never not funny to capture someone swearing on live television:
Also, check out that Grave Digger link.  Lesson number one out there for all you kids thinking about becoming a blogger: there is never a bad time to link to YouTube videos of Grave Digger within a blog post.

True story, I actually went to see Monster Jam or whatever the hell they call it at Kemper about eight years ago, and I was so stoked for the Grave Digger portion of the show which was the finale or something, and the damn thing came out for thirty seconds, hit a ramp wrong, and flipped over.  Sure, it was awesome, but not as awesome as it could have been.

Always Tip Your Busboy

This can't be true...

Kansas City is the smallest market for AEG, and its presence here was prompted by unique circumstances. 
Phil Anschutz, the Denver billionaire owner of Anschutz Co., is a University of Kansas alumnus and native of Russell, Kan. 
He met former Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes at KU when he was a bus boy at her sorority house. That acquaintance helped encourage Anschutz’s later interest in backing the Sprint Center.
Small world.

Read more here:

Calling All Kansas City Billionaires: AEG Up For Sale

AEG (Anschutz Entertainment Group), the owner and operator of our own Sprint Center, is for sale.  It's not exactly known what will come from this, or if our good friend Tim Leiweke will be kicked to the curb and forced to be an organ grinder just to make a living, but it will mean a change in the management if all of AEG's properties.

The AP article goes on to say that everything is just fine for LA's futile prospects of courting an NFL franchise, what will this mean for Kansas City.  Will we continue to see an exhibition game each year, or even have tournaments like Ice Breaker or any other hockey events?  Coupled with the NHL lockout, and the real possibility that the Rangers-Avs game will be cancelled, has the Sprint Center peaked too soon, and sealed its fate as a decent concert venue for the next thirty years?  The pessimist in us all wants to say 'yes,' and we wouldn't be wrong.  But – and bear with me here – what if this new company, whoever it is, demands more out of a world class venue like the Sprint Center despite owning and operation showpieces around the globe?  What if Kansas City becomes a testing ground, or the crown jewel of the Midwest?  Maybe they won't lure an NHL or NBA franchise (if anything, the NHL is headed for contraction...hopefully not of all thirty teams...), but bring in more sporting events.  Not even just hockey.  A Frozen Four, a March Madness regional, the Big XII, the SEC, youth events, exhibition games, etc.  They can make it happen.  Please do, whoever you are, for the sake of our city's sports sanity.

Independence Events Center Hosts Local College Hockey Tournament September 21-22

Ready for college hockey to come to the Sprint Center?!?!  Forget you know anything about that because the Independence Events Center is about to BLOW YOUR MIND.

Next weekend, Friday and Saturday the 21st and 22nd (respectively), the IEC is hosting a FREE Kickoff College Hockey Tournament featuring three local college hockey clubs from Kansas, Mizzou, and Missouri State.  As stated before, these are club teams that play in the MACHA (click the link for more info).  Remember, this event is FREE.  Yes, FREE.  Of course, the IEC is collecting $5 donations for their youth skating programs.

So, c'mon, support your local ice facilities, ya jerks.

The Schedule (all games at IEC)
Mizzou vs Kansas, 8pm
Mizzou vs MO State, 11am
Kansas vs MO State, 8pm

Ice Breaker Tournament Games To Be Televised on NBCSN

Are you going to the Ice Breaker Tournament games at the Sprint Center on October 12th and 13th?  Well, you should, because aside from the Mavericks, that may be the only non-rec league hockey we get to see in our fair metropolitan area this fall/winter.  But, if you can't make it out, don't worry because NBC Sports Network has you covered.

Three of the tournament games – including the tournament championship – will be shown on NBCSN.  Here is the schedule, via SBNation:
So, this is nice.  Every team gets at least one game on television.  For Army, this will be their only NBCSN televised game.

This will not only give Kansas City hockey fans a nice change of pace from the NHL exhibition games every year, but also expose the Sprint Center ice its first television audience.  The barn may not be completely full for these games, but this will give a section of the national hockey-loving public a taste of what Kansas City has to offer as a hockey town.

To the best of my research, other than Mavs and Blades games that have been televised locally on MetroSports, I cannot find the last actual nationally televised hockey game in Kansas City history.  Has there been one?  My knowledge of the 1970s is a bit fuzzy, but television coverage for the Scouts may have been minimal, if not nonexistent (just ask Aaron over at the NHL in KC).  Please correct me if I'm wrong, though.

Go be a part of Kansas City hockey history and sit in the stands, or watch, the first (maybe) nationally televised hockey game in Kansas City history!

NBCSN channels in KC:
Time Warner: 55, 323, 1323
U-Verse: 640, 1640
Dish: 159
DirecTV: 603

NBCSN channel page

Construction Update: Burlington Creek Ice Rink Still to Open in November

Above is a not-so-good photo of the new outdoor ice rink coming soon to the Burlington Creek shopping district in the Northland.  As mentioned, this is a really, really small rink.  Like, think of a really small ice rink, and then picture it about half that size.  Yeah, muy pequeño.  Muy muy muy.

Basically, to the far left of the photo is the tower-thing (pictured below), which represents one far side of the rink.  If you click on the photo and make it larger, you will see the edge of the businesses on the far right, which is the other end of the rink.  I assume that tree isn't going anywhere, so the rink will shimmy into that space up against Em Chamas et al.  It's essentially going to be an ice covered patio.

But don't fret, Kansas City area ice sport enthusiast!  It is still an ice rink.  Plus, the KC ICE site – not updated since its creation – still boasts it is in some way supposed to support Russell Stover hockey.  Also, it's still going to open this winter, so says the banner on the tower-thing built (I assume) just to hold the banner stating when the rink will open.  So, that's good.