Artificial Ice explores how hockey has moved from popular pastime to commercial entertainment product, and one struggling to maintain its stature in the North American entertainment market. Contributors to Artificial Ice discuss the changing character of "major league" sports in North America, the strategic mistakes of the NHL in trying to enlarge its US presence, the importance of television to the economics of sports today, and the role of luxury sports facilities in the new "downtown" economy. The book highlights profound social and cultural changes within hockey, as well as in the global market for sporting spectacles.
The one-two punch of David Whitson and Richard Gruneau is fast gaining the reputation of being the academic equivalent of the New York Islanders' prolific on-ice tandem of Bryan Trottier and Mike Bossy. Following upon their ealier collaboration, Hockey Night in Canada, the duo assembled a gifted cast of academics to write Artificial Ice. The final product is a set of twelve well-crafted essays that are informative and insightful. This edited volume shows the cultural implications of hockey, not only in Canada but globally, as well as the economic and political side of the sport.