The last slate of games for the NHL’s exhibition round ahead of the postseason have officially wrapped up, with the Vegas Golden Knights walloping the Arizona Coyotes 4-1, the Columbus Blue Jackets demolishing the Boston Bruins, and the Nashville Predators shutting out the Dallas Stars.
Now, it’s a brief break before official game action starts on Saturday, with Colorado playing their first postseason game of 2020 on Sunday afternoon. The top regular season teams in each division will hold a round-robin tournament to determine first round seeding, while the teams who were on the bubble (no pun intended) leading into the postseason will each play a best-of-five ‘play-in’ series to determine who actually gets to reach the real first round.
Before we reach those pre-playoff playoff games, though, let’s hope the league figures out what’s going on with the audio in the arenas:
While some of the exhibition games seemed to have fairly impressive-sounding ‘crowd noises’ piped in to make the broadcast sound more realistic, a few other games had... less than desirable results.
It’s sounds like the in arena audio feed is being run backwards— Lindsey Brown (@lindseybrown35) July 31, 2020
Sure enough, as is evidenced by some sleuthing from Scouting The Refs, there was a bit of an audio malfunction in some earlier games — including the Avalanche-Wild matchup. And while some commenters said that other later games sounded clearer, the Coyotes-Golden Knights game had some truly haunting audio sounds that just aren’t going to go away any time soon.
Speaking of things that need improving, Nazem Kadri had some choice words for the NHL about how far they have to go before they’ll have truly addressed inequality in hockey:
#Avs Nazem Kadri on showing of solidarity between himself, Bellemare and Wild players during anthems:— Scott MacDonald (@0ffScottFree) July 29, 2020
"From a league standpoint, I think we'd like to see a little more acknowledgement and to have (the NHL) address the situation and to know that they stand with their players." pic.twitter.com/qpi43H5uQ4
In response, MHH wrote a piece to talk about his comments to the media, and what needs to be done to really take those necessary steps forward. [Mile High Hockey]
Speaking of doing things right, the NBA made their official re-start on Thursday — and had some important messages woven in among the games that were played:
Every single person on the court takes a knee before the national anthem in protest of racial injustice. pic.twitter.com/xRjGt7PvG9— Taylor Rooks (@TaylorRooks) July 30, 2020
For now, Kadri and others are working together to embrace increased diversity in hockey. Let’s hope the league follows suit.
In other hockey news, the Seattle Kraken are starting to make more hires to fill out their front office. On Thursday, they announced the hiring of David Bassegio as their first Director of Pro Scouting.
Baseggio spent the past 12 seasons with the Anaheim Ducks as a pro scout, director of pro scouting and assistant to the general manager. The team also hired Lorne Henning and William White to join a pro scouting group that already has ammi Granato, Ulf Samuelsson, Stu Barnes, Dave Hunter and John Goodwin. This is the group that will do the heavy lifting when it comes to preparation for the expansion draft next summer.
In stark contrast to the NHL, the NBA was not afraid to take a stand as their season re-opened last night. Players from the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers linked arms on their knees while wearing Black Live Matter shirts before tip off Thursday night.
Lebron James spoke about the change they are fighting for after the game: