May 27, 2024

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Hockey Canada says summer time, elevated scrutiny responsible for small world junior crowds

2 min read
Hockey Canada says summer time, elevated scrutiny responsible for small world junior crowds

Empty seats have been a staple on the uncommon world junior hockey championship in Edmonton this month — and Hockey Canada says scandals surrounding the group are, partially, holding followers again.

Whereas the match normally sees 1000’s of avid hockey lovers prove for every recreation, the typical attendance for the match’s 20 preliminary spherical matches was 1,319.

Hockey Canada stated there are “a number of causes” individuals have opted to remain house for the rescheduled 2022 match.

“First, the COVID-19 pandemic delayed this match to August,” the group stated in a press release Tuesday. “And second, there’s comprehensible scrutiny from Canadians of Hockey Canada and the tradition of hockey.”

Criticism of Hockey Canada loomed massive because the 10-team match started on Aug. 9.

The nationwide sports activities group has come beneath fireplace in current months for its dealing with of sexual assault allegations levied in opposition to members of two former world junior groups.

The allegations prompted parliamentary inquiries and the federal authorities has frozen its funding of the group.

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Huge-name sponsors, together with Telus and Canadian Tire, adopted swimsuit, leaving the ice at Rogers Place freed from advertisements and the encompassing boards devoid of the standard logos.

“Our focus is guaranteeing the gamers who’ve educated for the previous a number of months can compete on this necessary stage — and for the followers to get pleasure from a optimistic expertise,” Hockey Canada stated.

Crowds swelled as tourney progressed

The primary day of the match noticed three video games, none of which cracked 1,000 followers. The most important draw was a matchup between the U.S. and Germany the place attendance was recorded at 829.

Canada performed its first recreation the next day — a 5-2 win over Latvia — in entrance of two,779 individuals. No attendance was reported for a bout between Switzerland and Sweden at 12 p.m. native time the identical day.

The crowds slowly swelled because the match progressed, with a crowd of 5,204 watching Canada’s closing preliminary spherical recreation, a 6-3 win over Finland on Monday.

Hockey Canada is among the organizations more likely to lose out financially because of the disappointing ticket gross sales.

“The stakeholders of the occasion — the [International Ice Hockey Federation], Hockey Canada and the collaborating federations — all make monetary contributions to make sure the occasion takes place,” Hockey Canada stated.

“Web proceeds from the world juniors are shared between Hockey Canada, Hockey Canada members, the [Canadian Hockey League] and the IIHF.”

Greater than 1,500 tickets had been obtainable on Ticketmaster on Tuesday for Canada’s quarter-final recreation in opposition to Switzerland on Wednesday.

The 2022 match was initially scheduled to be performed in Edmonton and Pink Deer, Alta., in December, however rising COVID-19 circumstances amongst gamers and officers pressured video games to be forfeited after simply 4 days.

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