In Raleigh, Chip Alexander notes pending legislation to "allow 'one-time' alcohol sales at state university athletic facilities would move" the Hurricanes closer to "hosting an outdoor hockey game" at N.C. State's Carter-Finley Stadium, which is adjacent to PNC Arena. As of yesterday, no formal bid had "been submitted by the team to the NHL," though the Hurricanes "clearly want to host an outdoor game and are working through the logistics to help make it happen." The N.C. House of Representatives is expected to "take up its amendments to Senate Bill 469, one of which includes a provision to allow the sale of beer, wine and mixed drinks at a 'special event' involving 'a professional sports organization' in a venue within the University of North Carolina system" (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 12/6).
SAFETY CONCERNS: In Pittsburgh, Adam Bittner noted attendance for Steelers night games has "lagged behind draws for other kickoff times for years." Despite mild weather, a total of 61,069 people attended Chargers-Steelers on Sunday at the 68,400-seat Heinz Field, during which videos on social media show "confrontations in the stands" between fans. It is "natural to wonder whether the environment that produced the incidents Sunday contributes to some fans choosing to stay away" (POST-GAZETTE.com, 12/5).
HOLDING EMPTY COURT: In L.A., Mark Whicker wrote NHL Kings fans have "noticed" the team's recent scoring struggles, and are "expressing their opinion silently, in absentia." It is "quiet and spacious in Staples Center these days, with empty rows in some very good sections, and the atmosphere is muted enough to hear errant passes bounce off the boards." When a fan "yells out to shoot the (deleted) puck, everyone can hear, including those in home jerseys" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 12/5). The Kings are last in the western conference standings and fired coach John Stevens in November (THE DAILY).