This article uses a case-study approach to develop an understanding of how framing on game telecasts can increase the brand equity of sports venues. In 2014, ESPN ranked the NHL’s New York Islanders last in “stadium experience” among all 122 teams in the 4 major North American sports leagues. Given the Islanders’ looming relocation, the 2014–15 NHL season afforded the last opportunity to consider how telecasts would portray the team’s arena, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Long Island. Based on a textual analysis of Islanders telecasts, 2 frames emerged: atmosphere (loud cheering and tributes to veterans) and nostalgia (famous moments and players from the arena’s history). Teams that play in poorly regarded venues can encourage broadcasters to employ frames such as atmosphere and nostalgia to increase attendance and sales of venue-related merchandise.
The author is with the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, Ohio University, Athens, OH.