While the NFL postponed last night’s Minnesota Vikings @ Philadelphia Eagles game before there was even snow on the ground, the NHL turned down a request from the New York Islanders to postpone their game.They also held a Devils game in New Jersey despite a “state of emergency” in the Garden State.
Postponing games can be a nightmare for the NHL in terms of scheduling, but holding them in last night’s conditions seems equally foolish. It’s never a wise idea to force fans to choose between going to a game and staying at home when their safety could be at risk.
So far there haven’t been any reports of car accidents from either game, but it wouldn’t be surprising if someone crashed which would make the league look awful.
The Islanders and Devils certainly aren’t among the league’s top draws, but staging a game in such awful weather halted even the most loyal fans from going to these games.
Official tallies listed 3,136 in attendance at the Islanders game and 5,329 at the Devils match, dramatically lower than their season averages of 9,692 and 13,931 respectively. However, eyewitness accounts suggest the number of attendees was even lower than that.
The result was a barren arena, and it almost seems like the NHL conceded that these teams can’t draw fans anyway so playing the games was an easy decision.
In one of the few well-handled situations the Islanders have had this season, the team offered fans the opportunity to swap tickets to last night’s game for tickets to a game later this season.
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