What to do and where to go from here
Hockey fans all across North America who are still hanging in there, hoping that a NHL season will happen this year should be praised. We are a dedicated bunch that has not been recognized by either the NHL or the NHLPA. It seems that that fans have been completely forgotten about by both sides like we don’t even exist. What can we do? Are we powerless?
Since the beginning of the lockout both the NHL and the NHLPA have gone on the offensive, blaming each other about big money issues such as salary cap, luxury tax, hard cap, soft cap and other issues like salary arbitration. While we have all come to learn what each of these words means, very few of us can even begin to comprehend the money values that are common to each of these words. 32-45 million seems so far fetched to me. The numbers are so outstanding that it is hard to understand where either side is coming from. Players such as Eric Lindros, Pavel Bure, Jaromir Jagr, Pierre Turegon, Doug Weight, Jeremy Roenick, Tony Amonte, among others have sucked the system for huge dollars for years. It would be interesting to see how many Stanley Cup rings this group has collectively. These players have been paid huge contracts, some of them worth over 10, 000,000 per year. U.S. dollars of course!
Who is to blame for this mess? Is it the owners who offered the contracts? Players who signed the contracts? Agents for helping to drive up players worth? The reality is that hockey fans don’t really care anymore who created this mess, they just want it cleaned up, fixed and over with. Fans want a decision to be made, we secretly hope that the season will happen, but will be able to move on with life if it goes away. We are left in amazement, these guys are all making such huge dollars, in the millions, and they are willing to flush it all away. We just don’t understand. How can this be? We would all love just even a glimmer of the chance to play in the NHL and to make millions of dollars.
Hang on for a second though, isn’t it the fans who that buy the tickets, subscribe to the hockey channels or the buy the hockey jerseys? Isn’t it the fans who will drive for 3 days to see their favourite teams or to see their favourite player? Isn’t is us who miss talking about our favourite team around the cups of coffee or around the water cooler? Where are we in the picture? We have been forgotten about. Gary Bettman doesn’t care about us. Team owners don’t care, the players are seemingly all in Europe but here we all are, standing together strong against one thing, the lockout. We just want it to end. We don’t really care who wins the fight.
Apparently the rumor is that Bettman will list a drop dead date sometime this week. At least fans will be given a timeline for an ending of this fight. It will finally be over, at least for now, if they can’t reach a decision. Hockey fans will just be left with a bad taste in their mouths if it is cancelled. People will care less and less about the NHL as the time goes on. We can’t possibly still be in this situation in a year can we? Will we still care when its over? I just hope for our sakes that this ends sooner rather than later. We need hockey back in our lives. We thrive on it. It gets us all pumped up.
Get on with it, get it decided, say the words “Game On.”
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