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good bet those numbers have just started to take off   October 24, 2017, 7:37 pm
Root for the Nashville Predators and you get the feeling of trashing your archrival s car.

That s no metaphor. Before every home playoff game in Nashville, a local artist named Audie Adams paints a vehicle in the colors and logo of the Preds opponent, and for a small donation to the club s charitable foundation, fans can step up with a sledgehammer and bash the thing to pieces.

This goofy ritual is a timely reminder that sports at their best let us hate without being hateful. And it s a small but fun example of why the Predators deliver more value to their fans than any other team in North America.

If we were still running ESPN s Ultimate Standings which compiled fan surveys and financial analysis to determine which franchises give back the most to fans there s no question who would rank No. 1 this year. Nashville made the Stanley Cup finals while charging middle of the pack ticket prices. Beyond that bang for the buck, the Preds deliver eye popping customer service. In our most recent polls, Nashville topped all NHL clubs in engaging fans through social media, delivering information via mobile devices, making it easy to use the team website and providing avenues for feedback.
Buy a Predators ticket and you ll receive an email telling you about promotions at your game and who s singing at intermissions. Send questions back about parking or food allergies and you ll get a personal reply. We are in a dialogue with every fan who comes through our gates, says CEO Sean Henry, who has been figuring out how to take care of crowds since he started his career as a busboy at Robert Moses State Park on Long Island, New York.

Nashville was one of the NHL s wobbly forays into the Sun Belt under commissioner Gary Bettman, and a decade ago the franchise was in serious trouble. Bleeding cash, the Predators were so close to moving to Hamilton, Ontario https://www.nashvillepredsfans.com/ryan-ellis-jersey-c-9.html, that season ticket deposits were being made there. And even after fans rallied to keep the team in Music City, prompting civic leaders and local sponsors to help, it turned out that part owner William Boots Del Biaggio had used fraudulent loans to buy his share of the club. He wound up bankrupt and spent time in prison.

Things began to turn around in 2010, when former health care executive Thomas Cigarran took over as chairman. Under Cigarran, Henry and chief revenue officer Chris Junghans, the Predators have balanced the demands of existing fans with the need to keep cultivating new followers in a nontraditional hockey market. This season Nashville says its season ticket sales are up more than 30 percent, but the team still reserves about 3,000 tickets per game for individual or group sales. Management has also empowered David Poile, the NHL s reigning GM of the year. Before last season, Poile traded Shea Weber for younger, cheaper and just as great P.K. Subban. This summer he signed or re signed Ryan Johansen, Viktor Arvidsson https://www.nashvillepredsfans.com/mattias-ekholm-jersey-c-10.html, Nick Bonino and Austin Watson all to contracts of different lengths , layering potential defections the Preds will face in the future.

Add it all up and the Predators, who are growing a new generation of fans two decades after their launch, are a team on the cusp. And they are worthy successors to franchises that have excelled in our rankings, such as Yannick Weber Jersey  the Spurs, Packers and Tampa Bay Lightning. These teams offer two big lessons. First, sports look very different to fans paying for their seats than to most sports writers or team executives. Time and again, fans have told us they care more about players giving their best effort, owners providing friendly arenas and teams showing loyalty to their rosters as well as their communities than championships. Fans want commitment, not guarantees.

Further, fan value is franchise value. Big league clubs are protected monopolies with huge media deals, so even the Cleveland Browns are worth nearly 2 billion, according to Forbes. But for a team to maximize its value https://www.nashvillepredsfans.com/alexei-emelin-jersey-c-8.html, it needs connections to local sponsors and community leaders and die hard followers who won t bail when it falters on the field or court or ice. Which is why investing in fans is a better long term strategy than screwing them.

Since the 2012 13 lockout, Forbes says the Predators value has jumped by 62 percent to 270 million. As more fans grow up learning to throw catfish onto the Nashville ice, it s a good bet those numbers have just started to take off.
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speaking to reporters after the morning skate   October 24, 2017, 7:36 pm
Minnesota Wild left wing Zach Parise will miss at least two more months after having surgery on his lower back.

The Wild announced on Tuesday that Parise underwent a microdiskectomy, a procedure designed to repair a herniated disk and alleviate corresponding pain and weakness in nearby parts of the body. Parise said earlier this month the injury he was dealing with was not to his back, but he declined to specify his issue.

He s been in a lot of pain, Minnesota general manager Chuck Fletcher said. I give him credit. He did what he could to avoid surgery, and rehab and get back and play. But at the end of the day, I think what happened today will allow him to feel better quicker and also give him a real good chance to get back on the ice.

The operation was performed by Dr. Kevin Mullaney at the Tria Orthopedic Center in Bloomington, a Twin Cities suburb, and the Wild said Parise is expected to return to play in eight to 10 weeks.

Fletcher said Parise will only rest for two weeks and progress to riding a bike. If all goes well, Parise could begin skating within six weeks.

I ll let all the doctors handle it, but I m glad he made a decision https://www.wildmnfans.com/jonas-brodin-jersey-c-9.html, coach Bruce Boudreau said.

Parise has not appeared in a game yet this season, having experienced trouble right before training camp began. He practiced with the team on occasion, but he had another setback on the ice on Oct. 16 and had to leave the workout early.

He s obviously a great player. The stuff he brings on the ice goes without saying, forward Jason Zucker said. He s also a great leader. He s a great guy to have around the room. We obviously miss having him.

The 33 year old Parise, who is in the sixth season of a 13 year, 98 million contract with the Wild, initially injured his back during the 2015 16 season and was unable to join the team in their first round loss to Dallas in the playoffs that spring. He rehabbed it without surgery and didn t report any problems last year Ryan Suter Jersey, with the 13 games he missed in 2016 17 due to other injuries and illnesses.

With 19 goals and 23 assists, he produced his lowest point total in a non lockout season since his rookie year with New Jersey in 2005 06.

There s no guarantees but there s several other players in the NHL that have had the surgery and play, Fletcher said. There s no guarantees, but we re pretty confident that he ll be in a good place in a few weeks.

Parise isn t the only one who s been missing for the Wild. Right wing Charlie Coyle broke his right leg in a game at Chicago on Oct. 12 and will miss at least another month. Right wing Nino Niederreiter sprained his left ankle in the same game and will be out until sometime in November.

Right wing Mikael Granlund played in the season opener but missed the next five games because of a groin injury. That s four of the team s top nine forwards. Granlund was cleared to return on Tuesday against Vancouver.

He s our best player. So hopefully he s not rusty, and he s in pure game form, and if he is, then we re a better team https://www.wildmnfans.com/jason-zucker-jersey-c-10.html, Boudreau said.

Granlund, speaking to reporters after the morning skate, said he was hurt in practice on Oct. 4, the day before the game at Detroit.

You want to be out there playing https://www.wildmnfans.com/matt-dumba-jersey-c-8.html, but you want to be smart, Granlund said. You don t want to be battling with this kind of stuff for a long time. So let s just get it healthy, and now I m ready to go.
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Pittsburgh called up rookie goaltender Casey DeSmith from its AHL   October 24, 2017, 7:35 pm
The Pittsburgh Penguins placed goaltender Antti Niemi on waivers Monday after he appeared in just three games as Matt Murray s backup.

Niemi , 34, had a 7.49 goals against average and a .797 save percentage. That includes allowing seven goals in a loss  https://www.penguinspitfans.com/ryan-reaves-jersey-c-16.html to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday. 

He gave up four goals in under 10 minutes during the Penguins 10 1 drubbing by the Chicago Blackhawks on Oct. 5.

[Niemi] just drew the bad hand for three games, general manager Jim Rutherford told reporters, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. He had the back to back games and we didn t do a lot to help him https://www.penguinspitfans.com/greg-mckegg-jersey-c-17.html, so I feel bad for him. Niemi had signed a one year, 700,000 contract with the Penguins in the offseason. Niemi, who won a Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2010, had been with the Dallas Stars the previous two seasons before they bought out the final year of his contract.

Pittsburgh called up rookie goaltender Casey DeSmith from its AHL affiliate in Wilkes Barre/Scranton.

DeSmith and Tristan Jarry will share backup goaltending duties and will be evaluated on a week to week basis, according to Rutherford.

The Penguins also https://www.penguinspitfans.com/carter-rowney-jersey-c-15.html  announced that forward Carter Rowney had been placed on injured reserve after he left Saturday s game with an apparent hand injury.
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being acquired in a trade with Ottawa   October 24, 2017, 7:34 pm
The Toronto Maple Leafs announced today that the club has acquired goaltender Calvin Pickard from the Vegas https://www.tormapleleafsfans.com/leo-komarov-jersey-c-18.html  Golden Knights in exchange for forward Tobias Lindberg and a sixth round selection in the 2018 NHL Draft.

Pickard, 25, posted a 15 31 2 record with a 2.98 goals against average and a .904 save percentage in 50 games with Colorado in 2016 17. He was selected by the Golden Knights in the 2017 NHL Expansion draft on June 21, 2017. In 86 career NHL games, all with Colorado, Pickard has a  https://www.tormapleleafsfans.com/zach-hyman-jersey-c-20.html  record of 28 44 6 with a 2.77 goals against average and a .914 save percentage.
Pickard has also represented Canada internationally at the 2016 and 2017 World Championships. In 2016, he appeared in two games for Canada and registered a 2 0 record with a 0.50 goals against average and a .971 save percentage, capturing a gold medal. In 2017, he appeared in seven of Canada s 10 games and posted a record of 5 2 0 with a 1.49 goals against average and .938 save percentage, earning a silver medal.

The Moncton Tyler Bozak Jersey, N.B., native, who was originally selected by the Colorado Avalanche in the second round 49th overall of the 2010 NHL Draft, has been assigned to the Toronto Marlies of American Hockey League AHL .

Lindberg, 22, appeared in six games for the Maple Leafs during the 2015 16 season and registered two assists after being acquired in a trade with Ottawa on Feb. 9, 2016. The Stockholm, Sweden native https://www.tormapleleafsfans.com/nazem-kadri-jersey-c-19.html has appeared in 66 regular season games with the Toronto Marlies and recorded 28 points 12 goals, 16 assists . Lindberg also skated in three Calder Cup playoff games with the Marlies during their 2016 playoff campaign.

The Maple Leafs return to action on Saturday, Oct. 7 when they host the New York Rangers in the club s home opener at Air Canada Centre.
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