The Trade-Off: Why the NHL should get off TV and put games online for free

The National Hockey League has just started another season -- and just missed a chance to take a bold step to win a new generation of fans. The NHL should put all games online for free, supported by ads.

The NHL's TV ratings are the worst among major sports. Ratings in 2008–2009 were down compared to the mid-1990s. Regular-season games on nationwide network TV were getting a 1.0 rating -- half the audience that watched NHL games on network TV in 1995–96.