Making money in sports is a difficult proposition – unless you are Kenny "Effing" Powers, featured above signing a K-Swiss endorsement deal. The Edmonton Oilers seem to have figured this out and have ended their pay-per-view experiment, signing a 10 year deal with Sportsnet to broadcast a hogillion games per year.

This bears further discussion on a rainy Thursday afternoon.

According to the press release on (GASP)

"Rogers Sportsnet today announced an unprecedented 10-year partnership with Alberta’s two National Hockey League teams, under which Rogers Sportsnet will be the clubs’ Official Television Broadcaster and provider of digital media content until 2020."

This announcement means three things really:

1) The Oilers took a look at the PPV receipts from the 82nd game of the 2009-10 season as the 30th place team in the NHL and fainted. When they came to, they swore they were getting out of the risky PPV TV business.

2) Sportsnet ONE – a new channel being added to the SportsNet Family of Channelry – think that it is infinitely less risky to broadcast crappy Oilers hockey then show poker 24/7 on their new channel for the next ten years.

3) Both parties think the internet will still be around in 2020, including digital content as a major portion of the agreement.

HIP HIP _________

We think that this is a tremendous thing for the average fan of the ice hockey in Alberta. Firstly, we don’t have to stream games on shady Croatian websites to watch PPV anymore. Secondly, we had this dreadful feeling that the Oilers would expand PPV coverage year after year after year until it cost us hundreds of dollars to follow our faithful hockey squadron on the telematrix.

Instead the Oilers have opted to go the free-to-air route, take the guaranteed money from Sportsnet and let the good folks at Rogers figure out how to make money in the TV business.

It’s amazing really that the Oilers have abandoned this experiment. They must have done REALLY REALLY poorly last season to give up on a business that has been several seasons in the making. It’s also amazing that TSN – first out of the gate as the 24/7 sports channel in Canada – continues to lose ground to Sportsnet, particularly in Western Canada. 

No more PPV.

Minor Squee.

All we need now is another press release titled "Rexall Beer beer prices to be slashed by 70%" and the squee will be upgraded to Tropical Storm Status.

        • *combs eyebrows, eats mint*


          An excellent question. I will have to go grab my slide rule and protractor, make a few calcs and i’ll have an answer for you in the next 90 minutes.

      • Deep Oil

        Oilers do not get money from Sportsnet, they actually sell the airtime themselves and have direct control over on air staff, a soft ppv.

        The heavy lifting was forced upon the advertisers that wished to commit to the advertising package, instead of 50 games +-, now the sponsors have to commit to 58 games, more $$$$$ to stay in the game, guaranteed dollars for EOHC.

        This 58 game package appears to be a forced sell or shotgun marriage, as Sportsnet 1 needs content.

        With PPV failing for many reasons, lack of interest, failure to deliver the feed via Shaw or Bell, community cable intermissions, increased pun time from GP, this was a failed experiment.

        • I didn’t realize they sold the ads Deep Oil. Do they set the rates too or just take the Sportsnet Rate Card and shop it around?

          Do you happen to know the rev split on a contract like that Oilers-Sportsnet?

          Note: Yes, I am asking Deep Oil questions. So what, wanna fight about it?

          • Deep Oil

            Not sure about your question, very specific, noting that LaForge and other management have stated – claimed on The Team that they own the air time…… noting that the airtime revenue is smaller than the Canucks, as the audience is split amongst two dedicated markets within one province.

            I would estimate that the EOHC pays for the airtime and non aquila production costs.

            I would redirect your question to Gregor, as
            he knows the industry.

  • Jodes

    Well that was 4:25 that I’ll never get back. People find that guy funny?

    I for one am glad there won’t be anymore PPVs. Face it, they were awful! Not just the performance on the ice, but everything about them!

    I think people had enough of paying 15-20 bucks a pop for something that reeked all the way around.

  • Poo Czar

    Kenny Powers is one of the few characters who deign to match the hubris and self delusion of our very own Baron Von Gretz IV, thus: *thumbsup*

    This PPV demise is great news – I can stop using my computer for grainy Oilers trainwrecks via shady Eastern Bloc websites and keep it fresh for grainy boner-inducing content from other shady Eastern Bloc websites. Mmmm… Frank Musil erotica…

    • Pardon me I missed this comment.

      Kenny Powers is a fictional TV character who used to play MLB. I am a fictional internet character who lives under a very real bridge in Northern Canada.

      You tell me who deserves a K-Swiss deal?! (hint: me)

        • I seem to recall MC Hammer having a lucrative deal with British Knights. Are you telling me that deal didn’t have staying power?

          I’d prefer to endorse this Croatian KD that is seemingly all the rage on the interwebs.

        • Travis Dakin

          Venture. Damn Venture shoes. And Levi’s ORANGE tab jeans!*

          *Explodes into tears thinking about the traumatic childhood that was a result of not having a SunIce jacket or Reebok pump shoes or regular RED tab Levis or friends.

          • DJ Dynasty Handbag

            i’m going to go on a limb here and…..wait for it…….’venture’ to guess you’re both in your early 30’s….i’m 32 and i have to say those two posts brought back alot of memories & put a big ol’ grin on my face*

            *it may also be the bc hydro i just enjoyed.


            Edit: that was supposed to include TD’s quote as well.

          • Gord-

            You are slightly off in your calculations.

            I am 147 years old and live deep underground in an abandoned salt mine. The acoustics down here are wonderful and allow me to work on my ‘music’ for most of the day.

            I still do remember your wonderous career with the Oil though.

            In reality I’m under 30 and old enough that when the lovely ladies come in contact with my no-no zones they aren’t committing a crime.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    I thought i read somewhere on the supernet that the channel would start broadcasting to the world this saturday.

    *starts popping popcorn in anticipation*

    • Hemmercules

      August 14th is only for Rogers cable subcribers. It noticed it says “Other distributors will be announced at a later date”, that later date better be before the season starts or there will be riots.

  • Chris.

    The PPV thing really pissed me off. When you’re a fan like me who pays countless thousands of dollars out of pocket to watch your team live; it really extra sucks to be squeezed even more just to watch the road games on TV.

    I was just saying to the wife this morning: “The 30th place finish last season didn’t just land us Taylor Hall… It may have rid us of PPV for at least another decade.” Thank God.

  • smiliegirl15

    So the only game they can’t seem to get on the air is the Feb 5th game because of a conflict with the Maple Leafs! Haven’t they figured out yet that the majority of people in the west don’t care about the Maple Laffs. You would think with CBC, TSN, TSN1, SN and now SNO they would be able to broadcast the Oilers game regardless.

    • Jodes

      I don’t know about that Smiliegirl.. there a still LOTS of Leafs fans out west. I don’t know what its like in Calgary or Vancouver, but when the Leafs play the Oilers, its a good 50-50, split. I remember about ten or so years ago, it was 70-30 for the Leafs at Rexall. Truely painful to sit through being an Oilers fan, and having the Leafs win as well..

  • smiliegirl15

    The Oilers and Flames did not sign this deal to save you money.

    As I understand it from Stauffer’s interview yesterday, probably as many Oilers games as were previously on PPV and possibly more will be migrating over to the new channel, which you will have to order separately from whatever package you have now.

    My bet is it will eventually become a 50/50 split, so get ready to either cough up more $ per month for cable or to start watching even more games on crappy Croatian websites.

  • As a new season ticket holder, I’m praying for the 70% slash to beer prices. Seriously though, how much is that stuff going to cost this year? $8 or whatever it was last season? I can’t wait for the $8.75 or whatever it’ll be to pay horcoff’s salary.

    • Chris.

      My ~favorite~ was the year they only increased beer prices by 25 cents… untill I realized they simultaneously cut the amount of beer being purchased from 20oz’s to 16…

    • Mouse

      If people would quit buying it(beer), it would stop rising. I made it to more than a dozen games last season. The pricess are out of hand. I can’t go to a game and just drink $4 dollar cokes, so I’m just not going anymore.

      • Mouse

        If the on-ice product, or even production of the crappy product, was better, I wouldn’t ahve to have 6 or more beers at the game (2 per period is quite easy and convenient).

        Plus for the infusion of heroin in the beer, it really is cheap for the end product.

        Here’s to hoping Northlands doesn’t learn how to clean their taps, and the heroin beers keep flowing.

  • Ryan14

    I’m to lazy to do it, but I broke down the price beer per ounce at rexall and it was not as bad an overpayment as you think.

    EDIT: Screw it. I’ll do it.

    A pint of beer is about, give or take $0.75, $6.00 at a pub/bar/restaurant. That works out to an even $0.375 per ounce.

    A beer at Rexall is $8.00 I believe, maybe $8.50. A beer at Rexall is also 20 oz, not 16 oz(though this probably changed when they introduced the new sample size popcorns without changing the prices). That works out to 0.40 an ounce
    So, it is only 2.5 cents more expensive to drink a Rexall beer per ounce.

    • Mouse

      A UK pint is 20 oz, and I thought that is what you get at the pubs. That would mean that the overpayment is $2-2.50 per pint. Could be mistaken though…

      And didn’t they allready pull the smaller cups at Rexall two years back and kept prices the same? I am pretty sure they are 16 oz already. Anyone know about this?

      • Let me walk you through some more Beer related math:

        Wanye + 100 beers – ALL MONEY = Ready for Love/Ready to fight/Ready to empty emotional baggage

        There be some stats we can all stand behind.

  • Broadcast and cable tv contracts are guaranteed money. PPV aren’t. PPV business was profitable for the Oilers, but not as profitable or as “easy” for the organization as regular tv. The fact that the Canucks who also have had PPV games and a good number of them with a much bigger market also choose the guaranteed money tells you everything you need to know about what business model is more successful.

    PPV was never intended to replace mainstream tv deals, it was to fill the void.

  • smiliegirl15

    Here’s hoping the new play by play guy on *** CHED is decent then. Before last year I didn’t even have cable and listened to the majority of the games with Rockin Rod on the Radio. If I’m lucky, Telus will add it to their sports package and get rid of golf. (I love playing golf, not watching it).

  • Ender

    Davis S wrote:

    *Yes. Its “Girls”, not “women”. ICE GIRLS.

    You are correct, Sir. Just like ‘call girls’ are in fact women (if they’re not, someone should be in jail) but the name ‘call women’ just sounds silly. Certain individuals (who happen to be right about 99% of everything else) should take note of your great intelligence, Davey-Boy, and go with you on this.

    [wink-wink, nudge-nudge]

  • Milli

    Wayne, my drive back to BC the next day is dangerous enough without cheaper beer, do you really want me to die ina a firey crash on the QE2? Well, if I do, they better have won the damn game, and it better have been a game #7!!! Staples, you sir are on the money, it will always be ICE GIRLS…..