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    Archive for April 15th, 2008

    Leafs absurdity

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 15日 Tuesday

    … and on the other end of the hockey economic spectrum we have the, it’s been over 40 years since their last Cup, Toronto Maple Leafs.

    I echo the second comment on this mirtle blog entry, as if the gigantic hockey economy of GTA cannot support another NHL franchise because the area is populated only with Leaf fans, willing to literally pay through the nose for some atrocious hockey, and no one else. MLSE is doing a mighty fine job retaining their monopoly on their ginormous hockey market.

    But when I tried to explain to the locals just how unaffordable tickets in Toronto were, I couldn’t quite do it justice. You can say “$400 a seat” all you want, but that doesn’t take into account the licence fees and everything else that corporate tickets holders pony up at the Air Canada Centre.

    Which is why it’s a good thing Rick Westhead gives us a glimpse at just what people are paying for Maple Leafs tickets (as part of a story on shady ticket-selling deals going down at the parent company):

    “He (the MLSE sales employee) wanted to meet at the Fifth Wheel Truck Stop on the 401 in Milton,” Tanguay said. “I met him, gave him the envelope with the cash, and a cheque for $65,000 and had him sign the invoice indicating the cash was part of the deal, too.”

    Besides $40,000 to cover the cost of the personal-seat licence, which gave him the right to buy tickets from MLSE, Tanguay agreed to pay $25,000 for the Leafs and Raptors tickets themselves.
    Now, what our friend here is buying is two season’s tickets to the Leafs and Raptors in the lower bowl.

    In addition to $40,000 up front for the licence, another $25,000 per season pays for a grand total of two tickets to 82 games (41 for each team), which works out to about $160 a seat. It’s safe to assume the Leafs tickets would be worth considerably more than the Raptors, likely in the range of $230+ apiece.

    And our buyer was desperately waiting on a list somewhere to shell that money out (not to mention the part about meeting at a truck stop with $5,000 cash).

    These are not the best seats in the house by any means: The red section is behind one net, from the halfway point of the lower bowl on up.

     

    Ah well, at least the Leafs are featured in one promising silly thing. Mike Myers + Jessica Alba + Justin Timberlake + Toronto Maple Leafs = ?

    Well, Love Guru may or may not be funny, but this sure is:

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    Posted in 02_English, culture, hockey, information, NHL, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    Problems faced by Japanese and Asian hockey

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 15日 Tuesday

    Just an excerpt from my exchange at International Hockey Forum regarding the development of Japanese and Asian hockey.

    Originally Posted by leksandstars
    I saw a funny thing about Japanese hockey. they got almost 80% more Senior players then Sweden have almost as much players as Switzerland, Germany and Austria have registered together, and still they are not so good,. It must have to do on the lack of interest from sponsors etc, if u play hockey and wanna be better u need to put away almost 100% focus for only hockey and with no pay checks if they not have in Japanese league that isnt possible, they need to bring home food to their childrens, am i right?? I think its money that is the difference, Asian player got good technique are very sppedy maybe not the roughest and stabile team japenese have a overall lenght in their country that is kindda tall^^

    Yup, you’ve hit the nail on the head.
    The lack of sponsors means, lack of pro teams, which means lack of players who can continue their career as pros and maybe become late bloomers. Instead many promising players are dropped from the system if they do not blossom early enough in their careers to get noticed by the 4 Japanese pro teams in the AL.

    Theoretically AL teams can sign any Japanese, Korean, or Chinese player to their team and not have them count as an import. So, the 7 team AL should offer more opportunities for all players from these countries to continue playing pro, but in practice this option is rarely being used. Not having a second tier pro league beneath the AL doesn’t help either.

    So, lots of registered players, but they’re almost all on amateur club teams holding down regular jobs and can’t concentrate on hockey.

    The new rules is more advantageous to fast and skilled players, so this helps Asian nations, rather than the trapping styles where physical size and strength is more important. But Asian teams also need better team work and hockey sense, and this can only come with playing more high calibre games, which there aren’t enough opportunities to do so in Asia at the moment (so some Asian players are making their way over to NA and Europe, which helps, but more players need to go play overseas).

    Originally Posted by KazakhEagles
    And then, as quite a few countries have experienced including Japan, those players aren’t available to the national team as their clubs continue their seasons, compounding the difficulty in promoting and using their elite division status to showcase themselves and the sport to sponsors in the country. The players also miss out on sharing their overseas experience to their teammates to speed the overall program’s learning.

    Yeah, good point.

    I’m not sure what can be done to rectify that situation, other than a more unified calendar. A totally unified calendar is impossible, but it might be possible to align various national leagues schedules a little more. Then again, I guess the IIHF doesn’t want all levels of IHWC tournaments going on at once (and we wouldn’t either, as keeping up with all the different tournaments going on at the same time now is difficult enough), so we end up with the current situation.

    Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, International, Japan, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    Day 2: 2008 IHWC Div I B in Sapporo

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 15日 Tuesday

    The top half teams were pitted against the bottom teams again on Monday in day 2 of the tournament, and there were no upsets, though Estonia put up a valiant effort scoring first against Ukraine and basically losing 2-1 as the 3rd goal was an empty netter. Japan shut out Croatia, but all goals were scored on the power play. 7 of Japan’s 8 goals so far in this tournament has been power play goals, makes me somewhat worried about their ability to score even strength goals. Kikuchi got the shutout for Japan, copying Haruna’s performance from the day before. I hope Haruna, whose been hot since the Asia League playoffs in February, is the main goalie, but tournament requires teams to play 5 games in 7 days, so it’s reassuring to have a competent second goalie. 

    Hungarian goals against Lithuania.

    SAPPORO, Japan – Ukraine, Hungary and Japan all got their second wins on day two of the IIHF World Championship Division I Group B in Japan.

     

    Japan – Croatia 3-0 (1-0, 0-0, 2-0)

    The hosting team not only has two wins in two games, but they have played 120 minutes of hockey without conceding a goal. And Japan has used both their goalies in the process. Masahito Haruna was in goal on opening day against Lithuania, while Naoya Kikuchi had the shut-out against Croatia.

    The Croatians played much better than in the 4-0 opening day loss against Ukraine, but they simply can’t find the net. The team is scoreless after two days of action in Sapporo.

    Japan took full advantage of Croatian penalties and all three goals were scored in power-play. Darcy Mitani got the only marker of the first period, while Daisuke Obara and Takahito Suzuki provided the third-period goals.

    Full of confidence, Japan is now heading towards the key game against Hungary on Thursday. Croatia plays Estonia on the same day. All teams are idle on Wednesday.

     

    Hungary – Lithuania 6-0 (2-0, 2-0, 2-0)

    Hungary got their second win in as many days, by cruising past hapless and undisciplined Lithuania. The Hungarians scored four power-play goals and a fifth came on a penalty-shot, well executed by Csaba Kovacs. Gabor Ocskay had two goals, his second was the only goal of the game which came with the teams skating five on five. Lithuania took 30 penalty minutes including a 10-minute misconduct penalty, their second such offence in two days.

    Ukraine – Estonia 3-1 (0-0, 2-1, 1-0)

    Gold favourite Ukraine remains undefeated in the IIHF World Championship Division I Group B in Japan. The Ukrainians dominated Estonia but sealed their 3-1 win just in the last minute.

    Netminder Aleksei Terentjev was Estonia’s best player especially when the Ukrainians were outshooting their opponent 19-6 in the first period. Ukraine dominated the first eight minutes while Estonia started to create offensive danger afterwards.

    Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, information, International, Japan, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    2日目:2008 IHWC ディビジョンI 札幌

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 15日 Tuesday

     

    大会2日目もまた上位対下位の日で、取りこぼしはありませんでしたね

     

    ウクライナ 3-1 エストニア

    SOG: 37-12

    PIM: 60-12

    ウクライナ相手に先制して、3点目がエンプティーだったので実質2-1負けとエストニアは善戦しましたね、気を抜くと勝ち点を取りこぼしそうな危険な相手です。ゴーリーのTerentjev があれだけシュート打たれて2失点とゲームMVP。

     

     

    ハンガリー 6-0 リトアニア

    SOG: 44-22

    PIM: 12-28

    ハンガリー対リトアニアのゴール集

     

     

    日本 3-0 クロアチア

    08:34 三谷(キャラー、鈴木) PP1

    41:05 小原(宮内、斉藤哲) PP1

    56:24 鈴木(キャラー、河合) PP1

    SOG: 35-15

    PIM: 8-18

    大会全8ゴール中7がパワープレーゴールという事で、5対5のイーブン時に大会3日目からは格が上がる相手にちゃんと点が取れるのかが少し心配。初日の春名に続き、2日目は菊池も完封勝ち、心強いですね。ALプレーオフからずっと好調な春名をメインで使ってほしいけど、7日間で5試合だから一人じゃ負担が重過ぎるでしょう。

     

    Posted in 01_日本語, hockey, information, International, Japan, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »