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.


29 Responses to It's time to start thinking boycott

  1. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    I think a boycott would be cutting your nose off to spite your face. You want hockey back in your life. A boycott of the game doesn’t help you get your fix like the junkie that you (and I) are.

    The scary thing is how close the 2 sides are. There is room to do this deal if they want it.

    I got news for the owners – your teams will be worth 40% of their current values if you skip a complete year off and if Bettman comes back with a crappy product in 05 – the teams will be worth even less.

    And to the players – you are GUARANTEED TO MAKE LESS when your union is broken and there is a hard salary cap of 30 million. Now is the time to cut your best deals, hang on to your last old-school contracts and move forward. You have fleeced your last GM-Owner you greedy, selfish pigs. You should all be banned from the Hall of Fame for the damage you and your S*****BAG agents have caused.

  2. shady_records says:

    Why can MLB and the NBA pay their players so much money and the NHL can’t afford anything?

    Sure, there are less players in the NBA, but not in the MLB. And they make A LOT.

  3. habsoverserver says:

    Dude, I’m really sorry about you not being able to get any midseason action, but can we please confine this discussion to hockey?

    I guess I have to take a Montrealer seriously when it comes to talking about a boycott. You guys did a great job boycotting the Expos. Your problem is that Washington already has a hockey team so a Habs boycott may not get so much done for you.

    I think all of America is ready to boycott the next Predators – Blue Jackets game. That may be the whole problem with hockey.

  4. hockeyhead says:

    that is very easy to answer.. TV deals, popularity, marketing. baseball has more games. basketball has endoresments.

    hockey is nothing and as reported by john saunders of espn…the nhl is not being missed by the majority including people from his native country…canada.

    the nhl has shot itself in the proverbial head.

  5. NjDEVSFN says:

    boycotting does no good…plus, if you boycott the NHL, youll never get your “fix” of the Canadiens

    how about watch 80 games on TV instead of going to 10-12? go to 2 instead…youre still as big a fan, even if you dont go

    why can the NBA afford such asinine contracts? simple, they play in the SAME-BIGGER SIZED arenas for the SAME SIZED schedule for SAME AVERAGE attendance

    the NBA has everything the NHL does…including higher ticket prices(court side to compensate for nose bleed), they can fit an extra 1000-2000 fans, and their revenue is the same

    the NHL cant afford the same salaries for the reason that everything is smaller yet team-size is 2-4x bigger. if the NHLPA thinks it could get the same salaries…wow, theyre idiots.

  6. 19Yzerman says:

    How does one go about boycotting a product or service which has be deemed unavailable?

    I this case I think as fans we should Publicly Display Our Displeasure.

    I submitted an article in attempts to rally fans to raise media attention that and had no interests at that time.

    What I suggest is a simultaneous display outside the NHL arena in every NHL city we can and that even if only for 1 or 2 hours with 15 to 20 people. If there were fans at various arenas throughout USA and Canada that the media would take notice that people want to see hockey NOW.

    WE WANT HOCKEY!!!

    WE WANT HOCKEY!!!

    WE WANT HOCKEY!!!

    Think about it. I know I could get 10 to 15 people to join me outside the Joe louis arena.

    Can something like this be put together??

  7. TrojanMan says:

    plus MLB has twice as many home games & bigger venues than NHL teams.

  8. TrojanMan says:

    an online petition, if there isnt one already, get one going and send it off to the douchebags bettman and goodenow letting them know we want the game back and FIXED the RIGHT way.

  9. habsoverserver says:

    I agree with most of what you are saying.

    It’s likely that at least Toronto, Montreal, Colorado, Denver, NY Rangers, Philadelphia, Dallas and maybe Ottawa are ready to agree to a luxury cap and rollback and get on with the game. I think Minnesota and LA could be convinced of the same.

    The problem is the rest of the NHL. Many of these owners lost a fortune on their teams and would like to sell them, but there are no buyers given the horrid economics of their markets. I think the strategy for these teams like Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Vancouver, Columbus and others is to fix the system well enough to sell their teams and move on.

    Detroit and Philadelphia must be freaking out over what they are losing this year.

    I think many of the owners can’t afford not to break the union and they are dragging the strong teams down with them.

    I agree with your assessment of the players. They seem to be on another planet.

  10. guinsfan4life says:

    Because both of those sports are marketed better than the NHL, and both have larger, better television deals.

    MLB isn’t a prime example of fiscal certanty, so they are a bad example.

  11. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    They are OK with the lockout in one sense because players with HUGE contracts like Lidstrom, LeClair, Amonte, JR, Burke and others are wasting a year’s worth of old-school pay scale. Foolish on the players part. Even stars will never be paid like that again.

  12. danbrave says:

    I think you guys are misunderstanding what I said about boycotting. What I meant was that we should all boycott the NHL for a short period of time once play resumes as a show of solidarity on the fans’ part to let the players and the owners know that they can’t keep doing this to us just so that they can get even more rich than they already are. Boycotting for a week or two might help ensure that they don’t let this happen again, thus helping me be sure that my hockey fix won’t be taken away like this for a long time.
    As for habsobserver’s comments, I went to my fair share of Expos games and let me tell you that it’s not easy to support a team that gets rid of all its star players the minute they hit free agency and that plays in a stadium so far out of the way most people would rather watch two squirrels fight outside of their house for convenience. Yes, most people do “boycott” Predator-Blue Jacket games, but that is just one fault of Bettman’s that has helped lead to this lockout. We need to tell both sides in this dispute that they have to be more accountable for keeping the game strong; so far they haven’t listened very well.

  13. Aetherial says:

    I wouls say that the Leafs are definitely NOT OK with the lockout on any level.

    The Ontario Teacher’s Pension Fund is not making its 15%+ ROI on the Leafs this year. They are losing big and a team that is already too old is just that much older…

    Then again, I wanted them to give up last year, not trade anything or sign anyone and just go all our rebuilding a la NYR, WAS, PIT…

    This hurts the Leafs organization badly on every level.

  14. 19Yzerman says:

    We are all suffering from HDS aka Hockey Deprevation Syndrome.

    I am not so sure that here in the USA that NHL hockey won’t suffer as if its was being boycotted anyway once play resumes.

    I saw an ESPN interview with Don Cherry last night and the things he was saying tells me that in Canada for the first month of the next NHL games will be damn near sell outs.

    I saw George W Bush visiting Canada with Paul Martin and the first thing I thought was Hey lets get the Federal Trade Commision to take action with this lockout. If Theodore Roosevelt’s administration can invoke the Sherman Antitrust Act against Standard Oil, the Northern Securities Company, the American Tobacco Company, AT&T and Microsoft

    Maybe USA and Canada can form an NHL regulation alience and force an agreement to be made.

  15. dave1979 says:

    good article danbrave and a lot of good points!

    i wanna know what the fu(k there is a big thing on the hockeytraderumors page about basketball….get rid of that spook sh!t this is a hockey site!

  16. rojoke says:

    If you’re going to “boycott” the NHL and the NHLPA now, when there is no NHL play, the you have to do it through merchandising. Without games being played, their only source of revenue right now is secondary sources. If you’re a collector, that means no buying hockey cards or other memorabilia. No videos or other merchandise like jerseys, t-shirts, caps, etc. And stay away from their websites.

  17. rojoke says:

    But the NBA also something the NHL doesn’t. A national TV contract in the US. That’s a big chunk of money distrubuted amongst 32 teams.

  18. Freeze says:

    I guess I’ve been boycotting the NHL for several years now, but not by choice. I just can’t afford the tickets. I watch them on TV instead.

    My impressions:

    The owners are insisting on a salary cap.

    The NHLPA refused the cap, but offered a 24% across the board cut along with some revenue sharing proposals.

    Instead of viewing the NHLPA’s proposal as a sign that the players are ready to negotiate a deal, Bettman plays tough and slams the door. No more communications, thank you. You can’t do that with hockey players. That is exactly the problem right now. Gary Bettman is not capable of negotiating a deal with anyone. Negotiating is a long, tough, painful process that Bettman is unwilling to get involved with. Gary Bettman has become a bottleneck. I think he’s right about a salary cap. He just doesn’t know how to NEGOTIATE it. He has no people skills and no negotiating skills, which are critical in a high stakes poker game like this one.

    My guess is that:

    1) This season will soon be cancelled.

    2) The owners will realize that Bettman must be replaced if there is any hope of a new deal. I don’t know who the new boss will be.

    3) A deal will be struck in time for the 2005-06 season.

    The players have shown a willingness to cut a deal. Bettman hasn’t. If you don’t believe me, picture yourself walking into your manager’s office and offering a 24% pay cut.

  19. Serdy says:

    hell, i would join you outside the joe, im only in windsor

  20. Serdy says:

    I used to be all for the owners, but as time goes by, i begin to dislike Bettman more and more. I still am more on the owners side, because it just makes more sense to have a league that is safe from having to contract etc, but i also am getting frustrated with the leagues union breaking techniques. The “waiting out” of a union is a terrible way to break a union, especially one where the players, atleast most, can afford to not recieve a cheque for a while. The ripple effect that they speak about is more then they think, as local establishments and merchandisers go out of business, there will be less to attract people to the games.

    All in all, the league NEEDS to make concessions. Just as they have been saying all along, hockey is a business, but unfortunately there is no certainty in business..

  21. tmeyers says:

    Boycott what?? There’s nothing to boycott. Everyone should be righting senators, congressman, MP’s or whatever you use in Canada. Pressure the government and they will do something about it. I dont know about Canada, but in the US, they will make them go back to work (Both NHL and NHLPA). The economic fall out is worsening. Not just for players and league, but for stadiums, restaurants, gas stations , gift shops, etc…

    Im telling..write them!! write them everyday!!!

  22. habsoverserver says:

    Picture yourself walking into your manager’s office with a signed contract for $5 million per year in your hands and saying, if you don’t up it to $10 million, I’m not playing.

  23. 19Yzerman says:

    Bettman as an office manager would say,” I appreciate the concession that you are willing to offer to assist our situation. Unfortunately we cannot allow only you to do so in consideration of all your coworkers and their wages. If you are sincere about doing your best to assist our company in these times of slow economics. You should have a meeting with all office workers and if all office workers can agree with this 24% roll back. Then we can allow such an offer to be implemented”

    Thank You and now I will begin to answer your questions!!!

  24. 19Yzerman says:

    This would be so easy to do if we could get more followers at other cities. I can’t believe this has not already happend in toronto or montreal.

    Maybe others will do so once they see picketters outside the Joe and and hear that this is going to be an every wednesday night thing untill hockey resumes.We can Call it hockey night in america and I bet every city in Canada joins in to show its going keep its Hockey night.

    I am going snowmobilin for the holidays and will return after 3 jan. I will look for your posts on here Serdy. Then we can see how many we can group up. Even if its only us two media will be on it.

    one little spark can cause a forest fire.

  25. Freeze says:

    The NHLPA did offer the 24% cutback on behalf of all NHL players, and no, Bettman did not “allow such an offer to be implemented.” I think I missed your point.

  26. Freeze says:

    Will I have a gun to my manager’s head too?

  27. rojoke says:

    What law is there in the US that allows the goverment to legislate private sector employees back to work?

  28. tmeyers says:

    I dont know specificaly what labor law, but it has happened on a number of occasions.

    If it has implecations that extend into other parts of the private sector.

    For instance:

    Who could forget in 1981 when Ronald Reagan went on national prime time TV and said:” I hereby order all air traffic controllers back to work at 12 midnight tonight or tomorrow they all will wake up without jobs” or when Georgey-Boy stepped in and stopped the MLB strike.

    They federal government can step in and override all unions if it deems necesary. The supreme court can rule that all players currently under contract must honor their contract or suffer consequences. (such as they must reimburse the league for all the money they have lost during there non-compliance to the contract).

    Im telling you this is what we have to do!!

    It may be more difficult because we are dealing with cross-border labor issues but it can be done.

    We have to get someone form the US and Canadien governments to get together with the NHL and the PA and hammer it out.

    Maybe we need Georgy-Boy to threaten to bomb NHL offices in Toronto if nesecary!!

  29. Serdy says:

    someone should call up parker and the man on the radio and tell them to start picketting, give a date and time

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