This blog post will delve further into the rise of the NHL among younger viewers, and look at why it might be the case.
This blog post will delve further into the rise of the NHL among younger viewers, and look at why it might be the case.

The National Hockey League has long since been a top-class sport, with many people from all demographics across North America watching it and getting involved. With players like Alexander Ovechkin now household names, it’s clear that interest in this sport has always been high.

But, as with all leisure activities, things are changing and trends are emerging. One interesting trend is that younger people are now experiencing a fresh wave of interest in the NHL. For watchers of the sport, this increasing bias towards youth is an interesting development. This blog post will delve further into the rise of the NHL among younger viewers, and look at why it might be the case.

Rise in sports betting

It may seem like a claim from out of left-field, but one key reason why there’s been a renewed wave of interest in sports like the NHL among younger people is because sport is now more interoperable with other forms of leisure than ever before. Nowhere is this more true than in the case of gambling, which has become much more liberalized in both the sporting sector and the iGaming markets over the course of the last few years – and with so many sports betting options and casino jackpots on offer, there’s clearly a lot to appeal to young people.

For the last few decades, sports betting has in fact been banned in the vast majority of US states and sporting contexts. This was due to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA for short. This law was, however, struck down in 2018, leading to a situation in which states can now decide for themselves whether or not to permit betting on sports like the NHL.

For many young people, multi-faceted leisure activity is a big part of the fun of hanging out and enjoying downtime. The fact that young people can now bet on the NHL while also watching it means that they can indulge more than one passion at the same time – leading to more viewing time and an increased rate of interest in the way that the sport works, and what its key players are up to.

Changes in the media

Another reason why so many young people are now shifting to the NHL is due to the changes the media has experienced when it comes to sporting life. In the past, the NHL could only be viewed either on television at a fixed time of the day or by going down to the rink and watching a game – if you were local. Those who weren’t local wouldn’t be able to participate to the same extent as those who were, as it would require lots of travel to get a match. And those who were out at the time of the match wouldn’t necessarily be able to catch it or watch it again.

But the media landscape has shifted enormously in the last few decades, and it’s now the case that people can consume NHL content anywhere, any time. It’s possible to catch up on past games whenever you please, or watch them on the go using streaming services. This has also been accompanied by a rise in sports media commentary and punditry: now, people who follow the NHL can see at a glance what the leading lights in the industry think about what’s going to happen. It’s no wonder, then, that the digital natives who use these tools are becoming increasingly savvy with them.

Excitement and buzz

Finally, it’s also worth looking at the fact that many of the players who take the top spots in the NHL today are actually among some of the best players to have ever played the sport. Take the example of Alexander Ovechkin, who has managed to scale the heights of the history books by becoming the top goal scorer of the current century and one of the best of all time. With players like him on side, the NHL is fast becoming a source of excitement that it perhaps wasn’t to the same extent five or ten years ago.

In sum, there are plenty of reasons why the NHL is becoming so popular among the younger generation. It’s in part a result of the rise in sports betting, for example – while there’s also something to be said for the changing media landscape as well as the amount of excitement and buzz that has been generated in recent years by the arrival of some key players.


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