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ESPN Puts NHL to the side With Latest Programming

Published July 30, 2023 at 9:19 PM
BY TYLER BALL
     
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Hockey coverage in North America has been a topic of discussion amongst fans and media for years now. The NHL and its broadcast partners just can't seem to find the right formula for producing high-quality content. This came to the forefront when a nontraditional sport was recently featured on ESPN.

Pickleball Makes ESPN Debut



The Professional Pickleball Association (PPA) graced ESPN for the first time on Sunday. Pickleball is a rapidly growing sport in the United States and is relatable to viewers who play. Make no mistake however this sport does not take all that much athleticism as showcased by the clip from the PPA action.


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ESPN Needs to Improve Coverage Now



The NHL fans have waited years for proper coverage of the sport they love. It has never truly elevated to the coverage that the other three North American major sports get. A great example of this is the Erik Karlsson trade. The trade and its rumors and developments rarely if ever get mentioned on ESPN. If a star player in the NBA or NFL with the award-winning pedigree of Erik Karlsson was available for trade it would get talked about daily.

Is the NHL Stuck in Coverage Purgatory?



The NHL signed media rights deals with ESPN and Turner Sports that will last until the 2027-28 season. This means the NHL could be stuck with the current level of coverage from both ESPN and Turner who owns TNT and TBS. The NHL needs to flex any muscle they have over the networks and particularly ESPN to improve and expand their hockey coverage.
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