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Editorial: NHL on Christmas? ‘Tis the Season for Ideas

December 24th, 2012 at 1:55 PM
By Frank Vajcner

Christmas is here.

It's a time for families to gather and to give gifts to one another. I will be with my mother's side of the family on Christmas Day.

The one thing I have noticed every Christmas is what is on TV in terms of sports. The NBA has a showcase of five games every year, including a rematch of the NBA Finals. Unfortunately, that is about it. Unless you are a die-hard fan of an NBA team, it's not too often you will see people gathered around the TV watching all five games.

Which leads me to my idea of having an NHL showcase of nationally broadcast games on Christmas Day.

Before any of my fellow writing brethren respond with a resounding "no," hear me out.

A lot of NHL writers don't like to work on Christmas for whatever reason there may be, but there are NBA writers who work on Christmas every year.

And to the NHL fans, wouldn't you like the choice to watch a Stanley Cup Finals rematch or your favorite team playing their biggest rival over watching whatever NBA team getting waxed by the Miami Heat? 

If you answered yes to the last question, here is my proposal for you and to whom it may concern from the NHL.

The NHL could pick four games to be played on Christmas. Of the four, one would be a Finals rematch. The other three would be rivalry games of a sort.

If such a thing were to take place this season, the games that would be played this season would be as follows:

  • Los Angeles Kings vs. New Jersey Devils (Finals rematch)
  • Boston Bruins vs. Montreal Canadiens
  • Detroit Red Wings vs. Chicago Blackhawks
  • Vancouver Canucks vs. Calgary Flames

Not a bad slate of games. And the same teams wouldn't play on Christmas every year, unless there happened to be a team making it to the Finals every year.

For the record, all games would be indoors. Moving the Winter Classic to Christmas is out of the question, and moving it at all is another topic for another editorial.

But as for the NHL on Christmas, it's a good idea in my opinion. The NBA has made it work with five games. The NFL will occasionally play a game on Christmas if Christmas falls on a Saturday or Sunday.

So hopefully when the NHL and NHLPA get a new CBA hammered out, maybe they will consider the idea of playing games on Christmas as a way to get more exposure.

So fans, what do you think of the NHL playing on Christmas? Is it a good idea or should it not even be considered? I'll gladly take feedback.

I wish all of you a Merry Christmas.

Tags: Detroit, Detroit Red Wings, Hockey, NHL, NHLPA

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