The goal got played twice, which I think was the kicker that instigated equal booing the second time... The first time though when he stepped on the ice and the intro's and things started, he got a standing ovation... But Miller's was longer.
I'm in full agreement that Miller should have got the longer ovation. The love for Crosby will return but Miller was deservingly the MVP and clearly the heart of the American team. He damn near won them the gold (I can't say stole because we might be the ones that stole the tournament, though we did well to come the long way back). Again, odd decision to show it, he didn't do it for the Penguins.
With respect to the Winnipeg stuff, I don't know what to think. By way of background this rumour started just prior to the Olympics. And it wasn't a bunch of bitter Winnipeg fans starting it or journalists trying to drum up a story. It apparently came right out of the MTS Centre which is the arena here in town. It floated around quickly and then was shut down very, very quickly by MTS making an announcement that no staff were allowed to comment on the rumour at all, either to confirm or deny. Since then the rumour has been out there, but was mostly pushed aside by the Olympic hockey stuff. No local papers are talking about it at all but that makes sense because they could easily be shut out of the formal announcement by the players involved if they do, essentially a gag order.
Now today we're hearing rumours of the local team, the Manitoba Moose, saying they don't want to go to Saskatoon (the Moose are the farm team for the Vancouver Canucks) and as such the NHL will be relocating to Saskatoon. I think Saskatoon would be ecstatic, but there's only about 150,000 people there and they'd have an even harder time holding a team than Winnipeg (or Atlanta) would so it seems an odd story. I cannot see the NHL going to Saskatoon prior to Hamilton, Quebec City or half a dozen U.S. cities first so that seems to be just obfuscation on the issue.
There hasn't been any confirmation that Bettman is here, though he was in town a couple of weeks ago, prior to the Olympics, but only talking about a hockey school apparently. If he is here again, then that makes it real interesting.
I will say I would be extraordinarily pleased if Winnipeg got a team again, you can dig back to see my stance on that and the evident bitterness in losing the Jets. At the same time you can also find that I'm not convinced we're a good market for it. Many of the requirements for it to survive here have come to fruition - salary cap, relative parity of the dollar and failure of southern U.S. markets. The rumours address the notion that there is now an ownership team of significance - the owner of the Moose, MTS Centre (MTS is the Manitoba Telephone System which is now a much larger telecommunications firm than it once was and has been buying up smaller players) and an unnamed third partner. I just remain concerned about a number of factors, notably the willingness and ability of locals to pay the new prices. Winnipeggers are notoriously cheap and most probably think that we'll go back to red seats at $50 per with cheap seats available at $11 like they were back in 1995. That's simply not going to be the case so I have concern about the number of season ticket holders, especially after the bloom is off the rose. I think the luxury boxes will sell out instantly and that's a huge plus we didn't have in the old arena but I think we'll go back to seeing the obvious games sell out (Toronto, Montreal, Boston, Pittsburgh, Washington, Detroit, Chicago) but other will be hurting just as it always was. If we end up in a division with Chicago, Minnesota, Detroit and St. Louis it might not be too bad because 3-4 of those would draw.
My other main concern is if we end up like Calgary/Edmonton currently are - undesirable to players and owners without the truly deep pockets. If we're losing, no matter how much love there is for the team there simply may not be sustained interest. I guess if baseline attendance of 8000-10,000 (the capacity of the lower bowl in the arena) and the luxury boxes plus associated revenues are enough for the owners to sustain a team then the rest is gravy and good enough. We'd need to get players and make the playoffs for the interest to sustain. We'd basically be the Minnesota Twins of the NHL - develop players and then watch them walk away.
Supposed to be an announcement tomorrow, so we'll see. I like the Threshers name, I really do. I think it's funny but I can see issues with the logo not being attractive. My guess though is the pressure to call them the Jets again will be too much and will be what we end up as. Lots of emphasis to make it the Manitoba Jets rather than the Winnipeg Jets though to make sure as to not disaffect those living outside the city. Whatever. Would need to redo the uniforms though so that there was some potential for sales. I've never really liked the Sharks colors or logo but there is no denying that it sells well and that is important. I think they could easily use the old uniform as the third jersey/retro deal that sometimes gets used. That would probably be ideal.