Sports Writers Replaces Lockout NHL Season with NHL 13

If you're not a hockey fan, chances are you haven't noticed that there actually hasn't been any hockey at all this season. This is because of an ongoing labor dispute between players and the owners of the league's franchises. It's meant the cancellation of well over 300 games and, if the two parties fail to resolve their issues, jeopardizes the whole season.

While this is a bummer for hockey fans (about the only upside is that Black Friday brought some nice discounts on NHL merchandise, such as jerseys), there are others that rely on the hockey season to earn their living, such as journalists that cover the sport. So, what do they do when there's no hockey to cover? They make their own. Kind of.

Bloomberg's BusinessWeek reports that Pat Hickey of The Montreal Gazette has been running the simulation feature on EA's NHL 13 for Xbox 360 and writing about the virtual season for his newspaper. Hickey writes about the simulated games, including quotes from players (which he makes up), and says it takes roughly 60 minutes to watch a game and 45 minutes for the write-up. 

According to Bloomberg, The Montreal Gazette isn't alone in using NHL 13 to give fans their hockey fix. Several bars reportedly air the games on the big screen, and EA and ESPN are logging all the stats of the simulated games online. So far it seems Hickey is alone in his write-ups of the games and homemade quotes from players.

For those interested, EA's stats currently has the Calgary Flames as western conference leaders, while Hickey's own Montreal Canadiens (locally known as the Habs) top the eastern conference.

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  • freggo
    No hockey all season.... wow.... did not know hockey season was even on :-)
  • assasin32
    So does this simulate the random fights because it's not hockey without the fights.
  • bustapr
    thats certainly interesting. if people are reading it, then hes theres nothing wrong. but watching NPCs play seems a bit too boring to me. dont really know what the reason for lockout is supposed to be, but I hope people get to keep their jobs after.