I was reading some of the NHL message boards the other day and saw many complaints concerning the NHL TeVee package and was reminded of some of the whining from a few weeks ago when ESPN was forced to shift some programing.
In a nutshell, ESPN was forced to move the NationWide broadcast to ESPN Classic (also broad casted on Speed I believe) in favor of a NBA play-off game. I saw that some NASCAR fans were upset about this move because either they didn't have ESPN Classic programing, or because the race would not be broadcast in High Def. And of course, it was all "NA$CAR's" fault.
Now I don't really consider myself a huge hockey fan, but when the play-offs role around I will try to tune in, especially when the Dallas Stars have advanced to the conference finals. Last night was 'game 1' between Dallas and Detroit and one would think that someone living in the DFW area would have no problem tuning in. No such luck for the 'fair weather' hockey fan. It seems that VERSUS is only offered by Dish Network on their highest level (and pricing) packages. I do have the 'top 200' package (mainly because it offers all the Nascar and College Football programing I seek), but to receive VERSUS, I need the 'top 250' package.
I have little room to complain though, because if I really cared about the NHL (and more specifically the Stars), I would have ponied up in order to receive the programing I desired. The same would be said if the Nascar TeVee package changed to some obscure network, I would gladly pay the extra bucks because it is a priority for me. If i am a fan, I'll plan.