A friend request from the MJHL

Travis Cech and the Dauphin Kings will take on the Winnipeg Saints in the MJHL championship series
Photo Credit: Duane Riz

Sports are full of people who “jump on the bandwagon”, and the Manitoba Junior Hockey League is looking to do that with social media.

There are a few pages on Facebook dedicated to the league, but none have been created by the MJHL itself. The first is a page titled “Dauphin Kings Royal Bank Cup in 2010” and the “MJHL Playoffs 2010” is the second.

Blaine Perih is the creator of the RBC Cup group and often contributes to the other page as well.

“I have been using whatever tools are available to put word out about the Kings and RBC. I have no association with the Kings, other than being a long time fan since I attended my first game around the age of 5 or so,” he said.

The league doesn’t want to reveal too much other than plans to discuss the idea during meetings soon.

“I’ll be discussing a move-forward strategy with the commissioner of the league and our media relations coordinator,” said Trevor Kennerd of the MJHL.

Perih feels if the league is to do that, they should address a problem they already have.

“There is the so called one chat site, if you don't mind weeding through racist comments and tons of nonsense that doesn't pertain to hockey,” he said. “Radio, local papers and now the internet are the best tools for getting the word out. CKDM (out of Dauphin) does an okay job of promoting the Kings and the league.”

A native of Dauphin, home of the 2010 RBC Cup, which features champions from junior hockey leagues around the country, Perih remembers a time when fans were far more involved.

“Back when I was a kid, CKDM used to have a show before game time called the Hot Stove show. This was great, because it allowed social interaction with the fans,” Perih said. “Fans were allowed to call in ask questions of the team and make score predictions for the upcoming games. If someone predicted right they were given a pair of tickets for an upcoming game, not that I ever won.”

Hailey Misanchuk, a fan of the league and a business student at the University of Manitoba, says it’s about time the league moved forward with the idea.

“That’s one thing we always see in any of the classes I take. Businesses have to adapt to what is going on around where they operate,” she said. “I know a lot of people that love the MJHL and I know for myself, it would be convenient to be able to check out trades and scores while also checking Facebook.”

But Perih says the MJHL’s success with social media depends on the fans.

“I guess if a fan wants to take the initiative and do a site like mine they can. But if you look at the attendance from Dauphin and compare it to other teams, the Kings are way ahead,” he said. “Hopefully Portage can increase their attendance next season with their new rink, then we’ll see if more fans start to follow the league.”

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Mitchell Clinton

  • User since Nov 3rd 2009, 09:34