It's time to start thinking boycott
After almost 100 days, I’ve had enough. I’ve had enough of not being able to taunt my friends who are Leaf fans, or of not being able to kick back on a Tuesday night to catch some mid-season action. I’ve had enough hearing from Bob Goodenow and Gary Bettman, about how they are supposedly trying their hardest to fix the game for the better. I want NHL hockey back.As someone who watches almost all 82 games of my favourite team, the Canadiens, it’s obviously been very hard for me to adjust to having no Canadiens games to watch this year. Watching the Habs is my greatest destresser and my favourite thing to do, and it is upsetting that it has been taken away from me because a bunch of greedy men are fighting for the ability to get the most money out of the new CBA. I’m sure many of you feel the same way about not being able to watch your favourite teams; I’ll even sympathize with Leaf fans on this one!
What I’m getting at here is that this lockout has been brought on by both the NHL and the NHLPA with a clear and utter disregard for everyone but the NHL owners and players. It is a slap in the face to all the arena workers, trainers, coaches, referees, boutique employees, restaurant and bar owners, and all others who are making much less than the players and owners, and nothing at all now that there’s no hockey. More importantly, this lockout is a huge insult to the people that have contributed their hard-earned dollars to the bloated ticket prices and unnecessarily expensive merchandise that have made the players and the owners rich: the fans.
Both sides in this labour dispute know what has to be done. A system must be in place that will allow all 30 teams to compete on a more equal level, one which does not allow salaries to skyrocket to ridiculous levels. Whether it be a luxury tax or a salary cap, both sides know what compromises must be made in order to implement this system and get a deal done. But their greed and stubbornness has overshadowed their ability to negotiate fairly, and this is hurting everyone but themselves.
I, for one, think that we need to make our voices heard. I’m tired of seeing good players leaving their teams for more money. And, most importantly, I’m tired of seeing these greedy men let their personal gain take over the spirit of the game. I’m not suggesting that we boycott an entire season; that would be ludicrous. But, hard as it may be to pull off, if we leave the stadiums empty for just a little bit – a week, maybe, or even a month – once play resumes, we will be reminding these men that their striving for personal gain can also be their loss. After all, hockey’s not about money; it’s about the fans, that exciting playoff hunt, and the Cup. Let’s make sure they remember that.