In particular, he highlighted a quote from USA Today's Kevin Allen on the need for the NHL to be on ESPN. The quote:
"One of the major beefs from many players is that Versus is not available in any hotel that they have ever stayed in. If a network isn't on a hotel cable package, is it a real network?"That quote reminded me of a story Doc Emrick told about former Colorado College and Wisconsin coach "Badger" Bob Johnson after Johnson passed in 1991.
Johnson was staying at a national hotel sometime during the mid-80's. This was during the NHL's first run with ESPN, back when ESPN was just a fledgling station, before it became the annoying monolith known as the World Wide Leader, filled with Shouting Heads and discussion of Who's Hot? Anyway, Johnson was dismayed to find out that the cable package for that particular hotel chain did not carry ESPN. Johnson wrote a letter to the president of the hotel chain, explaining how important it was for kids to be able to see hockey games on television, and thus, why it was essential that ESPN be part of the hotel's cable package. Apparently the letter was so convincing that that hotel chain made of point of making sure every room was capable of watching ESPN.
I'm not sure how much of that story is truth, and how much is legend, but it's a good story nonetheless.