Tell me why... I don't like Monday

JODY VANCE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 7:14 AM ET

Tom Petty was right; the Waiting is the Hardest Part.

Sports TV is my bread and butter, it is my passion.

Lately, I am very disappointed at how my medium of choice is wreaking havoc on hockey and how it has at least a hand in making us wait for the Stanley Cup Final.

Anaheim advanced by beating Detroit Tuesday night and yet the puck doesn't drop on the final series between the Senators and Ducks until Monday! Six days!

The spin on this is that the "Stars on Ice" show Saturday afternoon makes it impossible for the series to begin sooner.

I call foul.

This makes me pine for a time, not so long ago, when NHL playoffs meant a game every other day from the get-go and no rest for the weary once a final matchup was set.

It made things more exciting to see teams going out of the frying pan and into the fire -- battered, bruised and exhausted -- like true warriors of the sport.

I miss those good old days when we weren't held hostage by U.S. networks and cable channels -- before the league allowed TV execs to decide where the games might fit into their schedules.

Can't the viewing public south of the border miss a few episodes of "The Biggest Loser," "America's Got Talent," or "Deal or No Deal"? It is, after all, just a couple of weeks -- those shows can wait.

And, since Versus, not NBC, is showing Games 1 and 2, what shows could that channel possibly have in the hopper that are more important than the NHL playoffs? Just like last season, the big NBC network won't pick up the Finals until Game 3.

I think it would do the American sports fan good to not have the junk food TV they feast on and instead be served up our game on a silver platter.

This logic, however, is lost on the powers that be; to them it is a numbers game and instant gratification over long-term gain.

If proof was needed as to where the NHL playoffs rank in the world of big American networks, we found out last week when overtime between Buffalo and Ottawa - a game which ultimately decided that series - was forfeited in favour of the pre-race show for the Preakness Stakes.

You want hockey blasphemy, there it is!

Anyone who knows me knows my pet peeve is to be kept waiting on anything. Making me wait for hockey is just plain nasty.

Just like you, wait I will, and when the puck drops, we will forget the frustration and love every minute of that Must See TV. Even if the first two games are only available on a specialty channel in the U.S.

Jody Vance is a sportscaster with Leafs TV. Her columns appear Tuesdays and Thursdays in 24 hours.


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