There has been a lot of talk in regards to ways the NHL can make games without fans exciting to watch. Some are saying they should pump in artificial crowd noise, but in my opinion, and in this day and age, I think that opens up to criticism and besides, there are ways to make this work through technology.
These are some of my ideas. I would love to hear yours.
The easiest is first.
#1 Fans could type into twitter various preset hashtag reactions into twitter, facebook, or other social networks... #NHLGoalPenguins #NHLBooPenguins, etc... The NHL could easily have a computer that could generate crowd noise whose volumes go up and down based on the various reactions. If enough people hashtag #GoLeafsGo, a GoLeafsGo chant would be pumped into the arena. It would sound great on TV, but more than that the players themselves would be able to hear the reaction of their entire fanbase. hundreds of thousands of people. Could be amazing.
#2. On the NHL app, you could be dialed into a conference call that would hear your actual cheering in your home and allow those to be combined and pumped into the stadium
#3. By regulating these volumes whatever team is for that game technically "The Home Team" would have volumes pumped in that are some degree (5 or 10 times louder) than the reactions from the away team.
It wouldn't take a lot to make this work, but it would make watching the games crazy exciting and I can guarantee you it would lift the players spirits immensely...