ESPN Isn’t Feeling The Habs

Whatever ESPN wants to say about the Leafs, that’s fine. But when they rank the Montreal Canadiens as one of the NHL’s six worst NHL teams in several different categories, then it riles my dandruff. (That’s what we used to say when we were kids – “riles our dandruff.” No idea why, and it’s quite stupid, but whatever.)

If ESPN doesn’t like hockey, they should just say so and be done with it.

ESPN, whose motto is “Where Hockey Is Really Important As Long As Other Sports Aren’t On.”

Fan relations? Nobody loves their team more than Habs fans. Even Bruin fans would admit that if they’ve taken ecstasy or THC. And Leaf fans like their team too, although we don’t know why. Maybe we’ll never know.

I’m supposing the ESPN brass read somewhere that Detroit calls itself Hockeytown and decided it must be.

You be the judge of the following story. I have to get to bed so I can get up and do it again. Whatever it is. Although it might involve making our way to Dodger Stadium.

Here’s the story from TSN, and thanks to Danno for sending it over.

“The Toronto Maple Leafs have hit a new low, at least according to ESPN Magazine.

The American sports publication has branded the Leafs as the worst professional sports franchise in their annual ‘Ultimate Standings.’

The ranking, based on a variety of factors include categories such as ‘fan relations,’ ‘ownership,’ ‘affordability,’ ‘stadium experience’ and ‘title track record,” amongst others.

The Leafs did not crack the Top 100 in any one of the magazine’s eight core ranking categories, finishing three spots behind ESPN’s next-worst NHL franchise, the New York Islanders.

It is the Leafs’ fifth-straight year as the lowest-ranked NHL franchise. In 2011, the Washington Redskins and Cincinnati Bengals were ranked below the Leafs in the overall count.

The Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames and Montreal Canadiens were also among the NHL’s six worst franchises and could not crack the Top 100 overall ranking in the four major sports.

The No. 1 franchise in North American pro sports, according to the ranking, is the Oklahoma City Thunder. The highest-ranked NHL franchise on the list is the Phoenix Coyotes.

The top NHL franchises according to the magazine’s individual categories are as follows:

Bang for the Buck (wins weighted against revenues), Players (on-field effort, total ‘likability), Coaching and Affordability: Phoenix Coyotes.

Fan Relations and Ownership: Detroit Red Wings.

Stadium Experience: Minnesota Wild.

Title Track (Championships won or expected in the lifetimes of current fans): Pittsburgh Penguins.

As for Canada’s other pro sports teams, the Ottawa Senators were the highest-ranked, checking in at 42nd overall. The Winnipeg Jets and Vancouver Canucks were listed 91st and 92nd respectively.

Outside hockey, the Toronto Blue Jays were ranked 79th and the Toronto Raptors were 103rd.

No Canadian franchise cracked the Top 20 in any single category.”

6 thoughts on “ESPN Isn’t Feeling The Habs”

  1. I have nothing against Minnesota, but this article makes me wonder if writers ever visited Canada. I know I’ll sound like a total homer here but the Bell Centre is one hell of a place to see a game. Win or lose, you go there you will feel it. It’s like the whole place becomes one living thing and you find yourself sucked into it and become part of the experience.

    Even if you hate hockey you’ll be sucked into it there.

    Minnesota is a big hockey place but I’d put our crowds against theirs any day.

    ESPN treats hockey like a hated guest at the best of times anyways so I wouldn’t put too much faith into their opinions on hockey.

  2. I agree the Habs are too low, but I can see what made them fall in the ratings.

    They’re not a contender and aren’t expected to be for a while. The coaching was horrific last year. We have players like Bourque, Gomez and Kaberle floating out there. The bang for the Buck was probably pretty bad last year. And aren’t games at the Bell Centre crazy expensive (especially the concessions?)?

    So we probably scored really low on those categories, which brought the ranking down a lot.

  3. DK, I understand Gaston & Jack Schitt are at this moment cutting down those rather large weeds you have growing around your property!!

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