Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Some Preseason Losses, A New Marketing Campaign, and Still No Versus

Well, the Pens lost 2 of 3 of their preseason games so far.

No worries, though. It doesn't count, so who cares? :P It's the preseason, lots of our young guys are getting ice time, and the Boys are have shown over the past few seasons that, even if they don't fully come alive until after the All Star (or this year the Olympic) break, they can still make it to the playoffs - and go all the way.


Okay, so the Pens have a new marketing campaign... The slogan is "Defy Ordinary". I've got to be honest - I'm not loving it. In fact, the more I'm hearing it, the more I'm hating it. My favorite Pens slogan so far (since 1997) has been the inspired "Experience the Evolution" because it was more appropriate than even the Pens' marketing team probably anticipated at the time. Last season's "It's a Great Day for Hockey" was a great tribute to Badger Bob as well as a statement of the obvious. (Isn't it always a great day for hockey?)

But "Defy Ordinary"? Perhaps it is because I work at a college, but it seems more suited for our brochure than the side of a Pens' souvenir cup. Don't believe me? Click this link to open the Pens' new commercial in a new window - BUT listen to it with your eyes closed. I "defy" you to dispute that the ending line "We Are the New Pittsburgh" couldn't easily be replaced with "Call Now to Apply for Fall Enrollment." Take a listen and leave your thoughts about it in The Friends' Zone below. (Oh, and don't forget to enter the contest at the end of the video!)

We're getting dangerously close to the start of the regular season, and DirecTV customers (like me) still have no Versus. On September 1st, Bettman's sports channel of choice was replaced with the following message:
Versus is no longer available on this channel. Comcast, which owns Versus, has forced us to take down the channel because we will not submit to their unfair and outrageous demands.
This has the potential to be a real problem. Fortunately, we live in the Greater Pittsburgh area, so when FSN Pittsburgh and Versus both have the rights to broadcast a game, Versus was always the channel that got blacked out. But there are a handful of times when Versus has exclusive rights to certain games in the regular season and they hold exclusive rights to most of the playoffs, so if negotiations between the Philadelphia based Versus and DirecTV don't work out, woodstock and I will need to use the instructions on the WATCH GAMES ONLINE page to watch them online. If push comes to absolute shove, I can listen to them on SiriusXM, but listening to hockey is less than ideal. (And it will severely limit my ability to recap the game!)

Nope, these pics STILL aren't getting old. :)

Versus has been urging DirecTV subscribers to switch providers, but it's just not that simple. The 2 year contract we signed with DirecTV a year ago is structured kind of like a cell phone contract: there is a substantial early termination fee. At the time, we figured it was the price to pay for the best quality HDTV broadcast currently available. Twenty-two days into it with no real end in sight has me thinking it might not be resolved in time to avoid missing a game. Cross your fingers...

GO PENS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Creative Commons License
The Sidney Crosby Show
is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
(Based on all work at sidcrosby.blogspot.com.)