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Stanley Cup Game 7 Bumped by KING-TV

FRIDAY, JUNE 12, 2009
 Though NBC is televising tonight’s Penguins/Red Wings showdown, don’t look for it on KING-5.

In yet another painful indication of just how unpopular hockey’s become in the U.S., the NBC affiliate here in Seattle–the nation’s 13th-largest TV market–will be showing local news and “Inside Edition” instead of the game that decides the NHL champion.

Not that our few local hockey fans (read: “Detroit or Pittsburgh transplants”) will be deprived of the option of seeing the game. KING’s moved it to their whimsically-named sister station, KONG, which usually hosts paid programming and re-runs.

Yikes, NHL…yikes. Sure, Seattle doesn’t have an NHL team, but we don’t have an NBA team either, and I don’t see KOMO bumping Lakers/Magic.

Seattle was once a thriving hockey town–the minor-league Seattle Totems regularly outdrew the nascent Sonics. But as hockey’s minor leagues shrunk away, interest waned. Even though our hockey history includes the first-ever U.S.-based Stanley Cup champions, and we’re just three hours from Canada, KING figures (probably correctly) that more people will watch Evening Magazine than the deciding game of the NHL season.