The first sign that the Bikini Hockey League is going to offer excellent competition and players with extraordinary skill is that it's being created for a reality television program in which all the girls live in a mansion. Hopefully in lieu of roses, they do a stick ceremony.
The second sign is on the league's casting call page, which literally makes no mention that the ability to play hockey is an necessity for applicants. But forget that full-length bikini butt shot and you're disqualified, ma'am!
We kid, we kid. Everyone knows what's up with the Bikini Hockey League, in which buxom beauties will form two teams of inline hockey in Tulsa, Okla., while frolicking together for the cameras. Keith Whitmire of Fox Sports Southwest has all the background on the league, interviewing founder Cary Eskridge:
Expansion to a full-blown league with franchises in other cities is in the talking stages. For now, Eskridge is scouting for a mansion to house the players in during tryouts, a la The Bachelor.
A more obvious comparison is the Lingerie Football League, a bras-and-shoulder-pads concept that began as a pay-per-view special during the Super Bowl halftime break and is now a series on MTV2.
"I don't like to be compared to that, really," Eskridge said. "It's a totally, completely different sport. I don't want to say anything negative, I just think this will be more compelling and engaging. But time will tell."
Man, them's fightin' words about the Lingerie Football League, setting up the inevitable pay-per-view crossover between the franchises … god willing with the Thongs Only Rugby association.
Eskridge is an interesting fellow, who does have a unique hockey background: He founded the River West Inline Hockey League back in 2007, which was an attempt to get Tulsans into hockey by teaching them the game. From Shark Monkeys:
"You can learn all the fundamentals of hockey through inline hockey. A lot of people who have never played before can start here and get their balance, learn all the fundamentals of skating, shooting, offense and defensive play through inline hockey. Once they take the step into ice hockey they can immediately feel comfortable," said Eskridge, who also laces up the skates.
So there's something at least a little altruistic if Eskridge sees this new venture as a way to bring hockey, and playing hockey, to new audiences.
From the official release on the Bikini Hockey League:
"You just have to look at other major sports that have come to Tulsa," said Eskridge. "One of Tulsa's biggest events on a national scale is the Chili Bowl Midget Nationals held every year at the QuikTrip Center. Many thought it would never work when it started more than 25 years ago and now Tulsa is one of the biggest reasons that event works here."
Eskridge has spent a lifetime promoting hockey in the Tulsa area and knows this market. Tulsa's central location will reduce travel time and more importantly reduce production costs that would be enormous in major markets. Professional hockey has been played in Tulsa since 1928 and is a big part of Tulsa's sports history. Eskridge is ready for Tulsa to take the next step.
As for the Bikini Hockey League, it's not going to be a gaggle of model/actresses. Some players already booked for the show have hockey backgrounds. Fox Sports mentioned Ashley Van Boxmeer, a bikini fitness competitor; if the name sounds familiar, that's because her father is John Van Boxmeer, Stanley Cup winner with the Montreal Canadiens and assistant coach with the Los Angeles Kings.
From Fox Sports:
Van Boxmeer said she's been approached several times about playing lingerie football but it never interested her. Then a friend told her about bikini hockey. "Hockey will perk my ears up a little bit more than normal," Van Boxmeer said. "I've always wanted to play and my dad never let me."
Now she has a chance to play hockey and potentially become a reality TV star, in a society where telegenic women only get a chance to do the latter.
Two questions for the PD readers:
1. Will you watch the Bikini Hockey League reality show?
2. For the ladies in the readership: Does this offend you or are you cool with it?
Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
• Pat Forde: Differing ideas on tradition sink Indiana-Kentucky hoops rivalry
• Packers QB Aaron Rodgers has high, and dry, standards when it comes to centers
• Rangers' Colby Lewis alone in record book after bizarre pitching performance
• Shine: Beach volleyball gold medalist Kerri Walsh-Jennings almost lost out on Olympic dream