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Hockey Fight in Canada - David Shoalts

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Hockey Fight in Canada - The Big Media Faceoff over the NHL
David Shoalts
Paperback / softback
Douglas & McIntyre
UK Publication Date

In late2013, Canadians were intrigued to learn theNHLchose Rogers as its exclusive national broadcaster over bothCBC and Rogers's bitter rival, Bell Canada. The decision was met with equal parts fascination, shock and anger. WhenCBC rank-and-file employees came to believe their leaders missed a chance to hold on to at least a part ofHockey Night in Canadaa move that could have saved some of their jobstheir disappointment turned to outrage. This is also a story of great irony, as the win proved to be costly for the victor in the firstyears.
When Rogers sealed the$5.2-billion, twelve-year deal, it looked like the audacious play might just pay off. The Toronto Maple Leafs, with the biggest fan base in the country, appeared ready to shake off years of mediocrity and become playoff contenders, drawing legions of fans to Rogers's broadcasts in the process. In anticipation, Rogers gaveHockey Night in Canadaa facelift, bringing in hip George Stroumboulopoulos to replace veteran host Ron MacLean. However, in January2014, the Maple Leafs crashed hard and so did the ratings forHockey Night in Canada. It was crushing news for Rogers, with cable-cutting already shaping into an existential threat. On top of everything, "Strombo" bombed as host and the network had to bring MacLean back. Then things got even worseby the middle of the2015-16season, the rest of the seven CanadianNHLteams missed the playoffs and ratings fell further, chasing away even more advertising dollars. Simultaneously, viewing habits were changing so quickly no one could predict what would happen next year, let alone in the nextdecade.
Shoalts covers this story from the beginning, andHockey Fight in Canadadetails every fascinating play in this intersection of sports andbusiness.

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David Shoalts is a veteran sportswriter for The Globe and Mail who spent more than thirty years covering the NHL and the Toronto Maple Leafs. In 2009, he and Paul Waldie of The Globe's Report On Business won the Outstanding Sportswriting Award from Sports Media Canada. He lives in Bolton, ON.

"If David Shoalts is writing it, I want to read it. If he's writing about the messed up Hockey Night in Canada deal, I want to read about it even more."
Steve Simmons, sports columnist, Toronto Sun

"In Hockey Fight in Canada, David Shoalts serves as your thrilling play-by-play man and profoundly insightful colour commentator at the same time. For years now, some of the best plays, and dirtiest shots, have been off-ice rather than on, and Shoalts has been there for every good and bad call, every victory and loss, every highlight moment we would never know had he not recorded it."
Roy MacGregor, sports writer, The Globe and Mail

Country of Publication
British Columbia
Number of Pages

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