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Keeler: New Nuggets president’s dad changed Denver sports history by bringing John Elway to Broncos. Can Kevin Demoff bring Nikola Jokic, Nathan MacKinnon back to Denver fans?

Kevin Demoff was sired by Santa Claus and hired by The Grinch. You may not be familiar with Demoff, the new grand pooh-bah of the Nuggets, Avalanche and Altitude TV. But his father’s shadow looms larger here than Mount Harvard.

Short version? Four decades ago, Marvin Demoff, an NFL super-agent so powerful he was nicknamed “The Monsignor,” represented a certain two-sport star out of Stanford who didn’t want to play for the Baltimore Colts.

The Maryland version of events is that Daddy Demoff orchestrated the trade that made John Elway a Denver Bronco, that our man Marvin played Bob Irsay and Pete Rozelle like a fiddle. No. 7 turned our fair burg from cowtown to Titletown, and the Front Range hasn’t looked back.

Sometimes, history rhymes. That agent’s son, Kevin, was introduced in Ball Arena on Thursday as the “President, Team & Media Operations” at Kroenke Sports Entertainment. The Los Angeles Rams boss adding to his purview the Nuggets, Avalanche, Rapids and Mammoth, among the other playsets in the KSE toybox. Said toybox also includes Altitude, the television home of the defending NBA champs and the 2022 Stanley Cup winners.

We mention this last bit because the one-year anniversary of the settlement between KSE and Comcast, the largest cable provider in the metro, rolls around on March 17. The Nuggets and Avs still aren’t available to watch via the latter. In a town that’s home to the best player in the NBA (Nikola Jokic) and the NHL (Nathan MacKinnon), the most important three letters in Denver’s sports lexicon aren’t M-V-P, but V-P-N.

Throw us a bone here, Kevin.

Better yet, throw us a stream.

“It is possible that we could wind up doing a streaming product. It is possible we could wind up doing something over the air,” Demoff said. “It is hopeful that we could try to find a deal with all the cable providers.”

Hope is not a strategy, big guy. Not when you’ve left a generation of kids in the dark while they can watch the Broncos stink up the joint for free.

In a tale about fathers and sons, the problem here isn’t so much Kevin and Marvin as Stan and Josh. As in the Kroenkes, who’ve done much more good than harm for Denverites this decade, except when TVs enter the equation.

They don’t want to give up on Altitude, even as regional sports networks, like conventional cable, go the way of drive-ins and Blockbuster Video. When Diamond Sports and its Bally channels filed for bankruptcy, it forced peer franchises such as the Suns and Jazz to finally cut the cord. Phoenix offered a pay-per-view streaming service to patrons in Arizona and New Mexico. The Suns sent satellite antennae, on the team’s dime, to any in-state household that wanted them. It was a costly gambit, but the team’s television ratings, despite a maddeningly inconsistent season, shot through the roof.

“When I’m checking out of the grocery store, somebody says something. So it’s not like it goes unnoticed.”

That was Josh Kroenke, speaking straight from the heart.

In June 2022.

This was Josh Kroenke on Thursday:

“There’s nothing that I would like more than to be out in the community, going to the grocery store, picking up some eggs on a Tuesday morning, and not being asked about the Altitude situation.”

Couple things.

First, Josh’s father, Stan, is reportedly worth $15.7 billion, per He buys his own eggs? In person?

Second, whatever you’ve been telling the big guy at Trader Joe’s the last two years, he hasn’t heard it enough.

Or he doesn’t care.

“I think that’s priority No. 1, for all of us, as we sit here today,” Demoff said.

“And the first meeting after this press conference is on this exact topic.”

Awesome sauce! It should be noted, however, that Demoff has said a lot of things into a hot microphone over the years. The man once contended, about a decade ago, that the Rams didn’t have a “secret plan” to leave St. Louis for Los Angeles.

They did. Annnnnnnd, they did.

“What it’s going to take is all of us figuring out what serves our fans best, what gets our games on the air, what builds the next generation of fandom,” Demoff continued. “And how do we do it in a way that everybody who’s looking across the table can feel good about the outcome? We may not feel great, (but) everybody will feel good, and most importantly, then our fans will feel great.”

Actions, baby.

Actions. Not words.

“Figure out a way to do streaming,” longtime Avs fan Jacob Dubin texted me Thursday. “Or move on from broadcasting. I do like some of the teams showing games ‘over-the-air’ like the good old days.”

“Cable is dead,” added Jim Hanson, another Avalanche diehard. “Figure out streams. But I’m sick of being nickeled and dimed. Or (charge) a flat fee. Stream all home games free. I sure do miss just over-the-air.”

Marvin Demoff made a deal that changed the Front Range forever. Like father, like son? How far did the Apple TV fall from the tree?

“I look at the 7-year-olds, the 8-year-olds who walk into this arena,” the younger Demoff mused. “They should be growing up rabid Nuggets, Avalanche, Rapids (fans) … this should be the peak of their fandom. And so for us, it’s not just about who’s watching now. It’s about making sure we don’t lose that next generation of fans by not being on the air.”

It’s not too late, but the clock is ticking. Marvin Demoff made Elway a part of your fan cave. If Kevin Demoff can put Jokic back in your living room, given how much stubborn has passed under the bridge so far, that might be almost as impressive. The quickest way to Denver’s heart is through its television sets.

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