Wednesday, September 07, 2005

NHL's Pregnant Pause

The Lockout might've killed the action on the ice this past year but there's some evidence that it contributed to more action off the ice:

The most important story in the NHL in recent weeks - other than this business about a labor settlement being reached - concerns a population explosion in a pocket of British Columbia. Seems the maternity ward at Prince George Regional Hospital has been overflowing since late April, and a hospital spokesperson wonders whether the locals might not have replaced "Hockey Night in Canada" last season with "Hokey-Pokey Night in Canada."
The hospital usually has "60 to 80" births a month, the ward's patient manager, Val Stewart, told Canadian Press, but lately the figure has been hovering around 100. "There's no way to prove it," she said, "but ... when you think about it and start counting, it's been about nine months since [the players were locked out]."
So there's one good thing about the NHL's Lost Season - while the sport was on sabbatical, more fans were created. There's a flip side to it, though. With another mouth to feed, Mr. and Mrs. Hockey Nut might have to give up their season tickets, opt for 10-game plans. Fortunately for them, teams are talking about cutting their prices as a conciliatory gesture to the forsaken masses
So now that the labor mess (on-ice) has passed it looks like we'll be seeing a lot less Hokey-Pokey Nights and more Hockey Nights. At least until the season ends.

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