The Stanley Cup playoffs are just around the corner and Canada can't stop - yawning.
That's the conclusion drawn from an Angus Reid poll that indicates a level of interest commensurate with the record of the seven Canadian clubs who, for the first time in 46 springs, have managed to avoid the playoffs altogether. Anyone who's been following this NHL season and the TV ratings debacle it's become for Rogers Sportsnet is not surprised. It's bad timing for everyone here and that includes Rogers, holders of the rights and now left holding the bag.
Some highlights from the poll:
More than half (54 per cent) of regular playoff viewers say they plan to watch less this postseason (19 per cent say they won't watch at all). 'Among self-described "diehard fans," this figure rises to 59 per cent,' the pollster said.
Among those who plan to watch and were asked to pick two rooting interests, the Chicago Blackhawks were at 46 per cent, the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh next at 26 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.
With Canada's Cup drought at 23 years going back to Montreal in '93, it's those Canadiens who are the most likely to end the streak, according to a poll-topping 26 per cent of respondents.
But hey, look on the bright side, Canada. Only 78 days to the NHL draft ... in Buffalo.