So here's the problem. When I am at school at Purdue University during the winter, there are very few times where I can watch hockey (I can't buy the Center-Ice package because I live in the dorms). NBC tends to be the only time I can realistically watch hockey, and I had no problem with NBC until this past season. My beef with NBC is their game selection.
I probably have no room to complain, because the teams they show sell well out of market. On the other hand, being an NHL fan who can only watch NBC at school, I kind of get tired of watching the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Detroit Red Wings. The teams I wanted to see last year were rarely on. For example I wanted to see the Buffalo Sabres and the Anaheim Ducks. I saw the Sabres once, and never really saw the Ducks until the playoffs, and they ended up winning the Stanley Cup. Hindsight is 20/20, but I still think it would be nice to see teams of intrigue rather than established ones that might look impressive against the worst teams in the league.
Has the schedule changed? A little, but not enough that an out-of-market fan can actually get to see teams that they hear about. Here's an idea, if any network execs are out there reading this, how about letting the fans pick what will be nationally televised in the out-of-area markets, maybe a few weeks ahead of time. Like for the week of March 30, let the fans pick if they want to see Buffalo/Boston over Nashville/Detroit. You are forced into losing money over our favorite game, and if you let the few of us watching pick the game ahead of time, then it might increase viewship and you might stop losing as much money.
As a last request in this entry I want to directly ask, I mean beg NBC, <b><i>PLEASE DON'T CONSTANTLY TALK ABOUT SIDNEY CROSBY IN THE MIDDLE OF A NON-PITTSBURGH GAME!!</i></b> For one, he isn't in this game, and number two, you will confuse fans not accustomed to the NHL's players. Also, Crosby didn't play well in all but one of your telecasts of the Penguins. To me, you are basically hyping the wrong player if he doesn't perform in your telecasts, and the newer fans will be disappointed.
The bottom line is I will still watch NBC, because it is my only option, however I would like to see some change to cater to die-hard fans who are unable to see a lot of games.