Weekly Links: Impact of Olympic hockey on economy; Controversial comments from LA Times columnist, Lokomotiv crash investigation; Update on Kingsbridge Ice Center

Source: KHL

Source: KHL

Welcome to Hockey in Society’s Weekly Links post. This feature highlights articles or blog entries that are related to Hockey in Society’s areas of interest and that may be of interest to the site’s readers. Please check out some of the great writing that is happening in the hockey media and blogosphere!

  • Congrats to Mike Keenan on being the first Canadian coach to win the KHL Gagarin Cup! [Globe and Mail]
  • Stats Canada found that the Canadian arts and entertainment sector took a significant hit because of the NHL’s two week layoff for the Olympics. [Wall Street Journal Blog]
  • Following Donald Stirling’s racist comments and subsequent ban from the NBA, LA Times columnist Sandy Banks suggested Stirling look into owning an NHL team to avoid black athletes. Not the best advice. [Color of Hockey]
  • New York Rangers forward Dominic Moore, who lost his wife to cancer in 2012, was nominated for the Masterton Award for his dedication to hockey. E:60 also completed a short documentary. [My Life is Hockey]

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The New York Islanders, the Barclays Center, and the politics of sport arenas: Winners and losers in the “Battle for Brooklyn”

The New York Islanders are moving to Brooklyn. When the Islanders faceoff in their first game of the 2014-15 2015-16 NHL season, it will mark an exciting day for the franchise as the team celebrates its move to a new arena in a new part of town. What Islanders players and fans may not know is that the opening faceoff will be taking place on the exact spot where, less than 10 years earlier, former Brooklyn residents lived before being forcibly evicted by the State of New York to allow a billionaire to construct the Barclays Center.

While fans of the Islanders may celebrate the end of constant discussions about the future of the Islanders, and while owner Charles Wang may welcome the possibility of expanding his team’s brand into the hip and gentrifying borough of Brooklyn, it is also important to consider the politics behind this move and the arena that the Islanders will now be calling home. This post examines the history of the Barclays Center, and the social movement of Brooklyn residents who tried, but failed, to save their homes and businesses from being seized to construct the arena, in light of the political significance of professional sport in the borough.

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Weekly Links: NHLPA and owners begin CBA negotiations; Social media and hockey analytics; Plans for new arena in Markham

Proposed Markham arena (Image from: http://www.cbc.ca/)

Welcome to Hockey in Society’s Weekly Links post. This feature highlights articles or blog entries that are related to Hockey in Society’s areas of interest and that may be of interest to the site’s readers.

Hockey Links

  • Lots of chatter about the discussion between NHL owners the NHL Players’ Association as they begin to negotiate a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. David Shoalts has a good overview of the key issues in this negotiation. [Globe and Mail]
  • Meanwhile, Kukla’s Corner has the details of the NHLPA’s 31-man negotiating committee. Lots of prominent players are involved on the committee, including Henrik Zetterberg (Red Wings), Shane Doan (Phoenix Coyotes), Shea Weber (Nashville Predators, and John Tavares (New York Islanders). [Kukla’s Corner]
  • Hockey in Society contributor Sunil Agnihotri discusses information overload in the digital age, with specific discussion of the various ways in which hockey fans can consume the sport through (new) media. [Super Fan. 2.0]
  • More social media news: the Detroit Red Wings are hosting a social media meet-up at the Social Media Day Detroit conference. [Kukla’s Corner]
  • Daniel Wagner reports on “the next stage in hockey analytics,” discussing an advanced stats tracking system that is becoming popular in the NBA. [Backhand Shelf]
  • The plans for the new hockey arena in Markham, ON have been released. The 20,000+ seat arena is aiming to open 2014 and hoping to host the 2015 World Junior Championships. [TSN]
  • Bruce Dowbiggen reports that the NHL is considering adding a Sunday night Canadian broadcast in addition to the traditional Saturday Hockey Night in Canada broadcast. This may mean that the CBC maintains the HNIC rights while TSN and Sportsnet have the opportunity to broadcast more games featuring Canadian teams. [Globe and Mail]
  • An interesting post by Greg Wyshinki about Sidney Crosby’s new 12-year contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins, and how the team is unable to insure it because of Crosby’s concussion history. [Puck Daddy]
  • Pete Cunningham writes about the anticipated economic impact of the 2013 Winter Classic for Ann Arbor businesses. The game between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs will take place on January 1, 2013. [AnnArbor.com]
  • Patrick Hoffman with an interesting look at hockey participation and popularity in sunbelt states, including some interesting tidbits about the support NHL hockey teams have given to local hockey teams. The Nashville Predators, for example, were active in the movement to save the University of Alabama-Hunstsville Division 1 NCAA hockey program. [Kukla’s Corner]
  • The KHL confirms that it will play two regular season games in 2013 in Brooklyn, New York. SKA St. Petersburg and Dynamo Moscow will face off at the new Barclays Arena. [Puck Daddy]
  • The Phoenix Coyotes sale looks set to move ahead, as a court overturns the lawsuit by the Goldwater Institute to stymie Glendale’s subsidization of the Coyotes’ arena. Lots of politics in this arena situation. [Puck Daddy]
  • I hope to write more about this on this blog, but I wrote a post at Nucks Misconduct about Pavel Bure and his legacy with the Vancouver Canucks. The post is not particularly critical, but more of a fan’s look at the player. However, there are some interesting aspects to the story. Bure, who was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame this week, had a turbulent departure from Vancouver that involved some character assassination in the media. An interesting example of the power of the media to shape popular understandings of a player and his/her legacy. [Nucks Misconduct]

General Sport Links

  • AWESOME BLOG ALERT: Tyler Shipley has started a new blog called Left Hook, which takes a critical look at different aspects of sport. You can read Tyler’s excellent post about the politics between Canada and Honduras and the role of soccer in Honduran politics. [Left Hook]
  • Also on Left Hook: Marty Clark, who co-authored a review of Goon on this blog, examines and critiques assumed “truths” in sport and discusses way of deconstructing these “common sense” understandings. A great read. [Left Hook]
  • Hockey in Society contributor Courtney Szto discusses the gender implications of nude athlete calendars, as Canada’s National Senior Women’s Rugby team releases a fundraising calendar. Are these portrayals empowering or exploitative? Should national sport teams have to resort to nude calendars to raise funds? Lots of interesting questions explored in this post. [The Rabbit Hole]
  • Saudi Arabia will, for the first time, allow women to compete at the Olympic Games. [Globe and Mail]

Weekly Links: Cherry’s ratings plummet; KHL takes action against goonery; Headshot debate continues to rage

Welcome to Hockey in Society’s Weekly Links post. This feature highlights articles or blog entries that are related to Hockey in Society’s areas of interest and that may be of interest to the site’s readers.

Hockey Links

  • Interesting piece from Bruce Dowbiggen about a significant drop in Don Cherry’s ratings and how the new measurement instrument for TV viewership may be responsible. The old line was that Cherry drew better ratings than the hockey game itself. Was this a myth supported by inaccurate measuring equipment? Or has Cherry’s popularity and influence waned over the years? [Globe and Mail]
  • Dmitri Chesnokov reports that the KHL has taken action due to the most recent antics of Vityaz Chekhov, a team whose thuggery makes the Broad Street Bullies of the 1970s look tame. Canadian Jeremy Yablonski was suspended the rest of the season, while fellow Canuck Kip Brennan was banned for 15 games. The KHL is now planning to implement a rule to limit North American players who have not played 80-120 NHL games, theoretically weeding out fighters who are not skilled enough to play at an NHL level. [Puck Daddy]
  • Good read about former referee Kerry Fraser, who believes that the NHL needs to do more about headshots, that fighting should be banned, and that Brendan Shanahan needs to remain firm on suspensions to protect players. [Regina Leader-Post]
  • Red Fisher criticizes the Pittsburgh Penguins for allowing Kris Letang to return to a game after taking a hit to the head. [The Gazette]
  • ESPN’s headline about the retirement of Mike Grier decided that his race was a defining feature of this NHL veteran: “U.S.-born black player Grier retires from NHL”. Stay classy, ESPN. [The Slanch Report; h/t to Puck Daddy]
  • Ken Campbell examines the potential legal battle between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the NHL over whether the franchise could prevent a second NHL team from entering the Greater Toronto Area market. [The Hockey News]
  • Ryan Lambert pens a pro-fighting, anti-fighting-for-honour piece; an interesting editorial that is worth checking out. [Puck Daddy]
  • Interesting piece from about how Newsport Sports Management, an agency with many NHL clients, has an employee to handle various cultural and bureaucratic issues that its Russian clients and their families may face in North America. [New York Times]

General Sport Links

  • This week’s “must read”, in my opinion. Charles P. Pierce offers damning critique of the NBA lockout, asserting that it was not about economics – as the NBA spin doctors asserted – but the power of the league and its owners over the players and their union. Among the insightful quotes I could include here: “Lockouts are not devices of economic correction. That’s just a byproduct. Lockouts are attempts by management to exercise control over their workers. Period.” [Grantland]
  • The Canadian Forces and Prime Minister Stephen Harper featured prominently at the CFL’s championship game, the Grey Cup. For regular viewers of Canadian hockey this marriage of militarism and sport should not be a surprise. [Globe and Mail]
  • All-time great Paralympic athlete, Chantal Petitclerc, who won Canada’s award for outstanding athlete in 2008, leaves to coach in the UK because of lack of financial support in Canada. [Globe and Mail]
  • Great read about Basil D’Oliveira, a South African born cricketer who competed for England, and how he inadvertently sparked the international sports boycott against South Africa that helped bring down apartheid. [Game Theory]
  • Interesting article about the ways in which mass and new media have changed the prestige of athletes: “Our most famous athletes exist as ideas that we share and discuss. The most popular athletes in the world exist as memes.” [Grantland]
  • James Christie reports on the International Boxing Association’s attempts to mandate skirts as part of the uniform for female boxers. Boxing Canada is, thankfully, opposed to making skirts mandatory. [Globe and Mail]