NHL podcast with Len Shapiro: Bettman says $1 mil cap increase considered due to league profits; Habs Dvorak out for rest of season; plus much more

NHL top prospect Connor Bedard is top candidate for number one draft pick as the San Jose Sharks and the Columbus Blue Jackets could be the winner of the Bedard draft sweepstakes by season’s end. (photo from nhl.com)

On the NHL podcast with Len Shapiro:

#1 NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says that the salary cap could increase by one million it may not sound like much but it could make a huge difference for club trying to make a trade, draft a player or just make it budget for that free agent. Bettman says revenues have exceeded expectations and an uptick just might be in the works.

#2 Gary Bettman said he’s not ready to reveal who will be the next owner of the Ottawa Senators. Bettman said there are multiple buyers vying for ownership of the Senators but Bettman did say there are bidders of magnitude of interest. Bettman said the sale is not tied to any future downtown arena as the Senators have played in the Canadian Tire Centre in Kanata Ottawa since 1996.

#3 Montreal Canadiens Christian Dvorak will miss the rest of the 2022-23 season. Dvorak had knee surgery Wednesday. When it rains it pours Dvorak has not played since Mar 7th when the Canadiens lost to the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 suffered a lower body injury.

#4 While you don’t see too much NHL coverage on ESPN during daily programming and a lot of the talk shows and sports reports don’t discuss game recaps but one thing ESPN, ABC and TNT are acknowledging that viewership of NHL hockey is is averaging 1.1 million a 19 percent bump up. The networks are in their second year of their seven year deal with the NHL. That’s pretty good considering the league gets very little mention on ESPN’s daily schedule programming.

#5 Len, the race to the bottom might prove to be fruitful for either the San Jose Sharks 51 points and the Columbus Blue Jackets 49 points in their bid for NHL number one draft pick Conner Bedard. The Sharks just lost in overtime in San Jose to the visiting Blue Jackets on Tuesday night 6-5.

Join Len for the NHL podcasts Thursday nights at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Kings to open the 2016-17 NBA season with away-home back-to-back games


by Charlie O. Mallonee

The NBA regular season schedule was released today and the Sacramento Kings will open the 2016-17 campaign on the road in Phoenix on Wednesday October 28. The game will be a 7:00 PM tip-off  local time.

The Kings first NBA regular season game in the new Golden 1 Center in downtown Sacramento will be on the next night – Thursday October 29 – when they will host the San Antonio Spurs. The tip-off in Sacramento will be at 7:30 PM.

The game times for most of the weeknight games have been pushed back to 7:30 PM to allow the downtown district to clear out from the business day to make parking easier for fans attending the game. The later starts will also allow fans to enjoy early dinners before the game and still be in their seats for tip-off. Game times at home will vary on the weekends.

The Kings will host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday October 29 at 7:30 PM at the Golden 1 Center in a game that will be televised nationally on NBA TV.

The Golden State Warriors will not visit Sacramento until Sunday January 8, 2017. The Warriors will make a return visit on Saturday February 4.

The Los Angeles Lakers will make their two trips to the Capital City before the New Year. The Lakers will play at the Golden 1 Center on Thursday November 10 and Monday December 12.

The World Champion Cleveland Cavaliers will make their one and only appearance in Sacramento on Friday January 13.

Kings games will be televised nationally five times from the Golden 1 Center during the season. TNT will broadcast the November 10 game versus the Lakers. ESPN will show the nation the Clippers – Kings game on November 18 from Sacramento. NBA TV will show three games nationally from the Kings new arena.

The Kings play four games in October (2 home; 2 away), 15 games in November (7 home; 8 away), 15 games in December (5 home; 10 away), 15 games in January (7 home; 8 away), 11 games in February (2 home; 9 away), 16 games in March (8 home; 8 away) and six games in April (3 home; 3 away).

The Kings longest homestand runs January 4 thru 18 with seven games to played at the Golden 1 Center. The team’s longest road trip has seven games between January 20 and January 31 on the road.

The Kings have 18 sets of back-to-back games for the season. Two sets are back-to-back games at home. Eight of the sets are away-away games. Three are away-home games and five sets are home-away games.

The Kings have never won a game when they have opened an arena in Sacramento. They lost the opener in Arco Arena I on October 25, 1985 to the Clippers 108-104. The Kings lost the first game in Arco Arena II to the Seattle SuperSonics 97-75 on November 8, 1988.