THis lockout stinks worse than this pumpkin a week after Halloween.
But does anyone care anymore?
(Photo from @RealGregMyall15)
Today I bring back my weekly feature of me venting and raging on stupid crap happening with the Canucks, their fans and around the NHL. Two things about this feature… 1) It will appear sporadically, and 2) It is blatantly ripped off from a stand-up bit from comedian Craig Anton. On either point, I make no apologies. Enjoy. Or don’t.
This week, in the glorious return of "You Know What I Hate?!" (please stop laughing), I eat from a big ol’ bowl of NHL-lockout-flavoured hate.
You know what I hate?! There is no urgency on either side of the NHL labour dispute to get a deal done. No urgency at all. I am completely baffled by this. I cannot believe that all 29 owners are sitting around, thinking to themselves, “Man, I am really enjoying losing millions of dollars because of an empty arena. I love standing by my principals.
And there is no way that the players are gathered together, regaling in their love of playing Tier 2 Dutch league hockey against some fat clog-wearing Pannekoek maker because they’re “sending a clear message to the league.” Why aren’t the Fehr brothers, Bettman and Daly sitting around a table, negotiating until a deal is reached?
It seems like with most other labour disputes, that’s what happened. You lock yourselves in a room until you hash out a deal. And you bring in an independent arbitrator, if necessary. The stubbornness from both sides is appalling and moronic.
You know what I hate?! Everything about Gary Bettman. I try not to hate people, unless they are mass murderers or child rapists or some such demon. And Bettman is none of those things so I should qualify that I don’t really hate Bettman. But I do hate how he acts and behaves.
I hate the smug look he gets on his face. I hate the way he answers questions. I hate the way he and the owners’ executive committee have taken the NHL season away from us so far. I hate that he is still in a position of power with the league because we’re forced to digest his brand of tripe whenever he gets to the microphone.
You know what I hate?! There is a small group of owners calling all the shots. Whether it is the “Gang of Four” owners, or the group that Elliotte Friedman suggested in his latest “30 Thoughts”. As I said before, I just can’t believe that all 29 owners are behind this lockout.
For instance, there is just no way that the ownership groups in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, and New York (Rangers) are 100% behind this. They can’t be. Their teams make boatloads of money and they’re in the strongest markets. I really hope, at some point, there is a group of these owners that goes to Bettman and says "Why the hell are we doing this again? Get a deal done, Gary, because I’m losing money FAST."
You know what I hate?! People are losing their jobs because of the lockout. That SUCKS. Team employees, arena workers, wait staff… all being fired or laid off because there is no NHL hockey. Well, let me be clear – they’re being let go because of greed and stubbornness.
It’s a damn shame that a LOT of hard-working people with no skin in the game are having their livelihoods changed or taken from them because of this nonsense. The players don’t care – half of them are in Europe or Russia happily playing to half-empty arenas earning their keep and having a great time. The owners don’t care – for most of them, owning an NHL franchise is a hobby; a side deal. Their REAL businesses make them real money. The NHL is pocket change for them.
You know what I hate?! I don’t care about the NHL right now… and maybe for good. It might sound like I care because of you’ve just read. To be clear, I hate the process that we’ve watched unfold. I hate the stalemate. I hate what the people involved are doing. It’s incredibly frustrating to watch the league that governs my favourite sport just dissolve into oblivion.
You know this word, oblivion? It means to be totally forgotten by everyone forever. And that is what is happening to the NHL.
I am awash in unabashed apathy about the NHL right now. The NHL’s big news this week is that it’s cancelling the Winter Classic. Do I care? NOPE. Truly, not one bit. I have found refuge in watching the EPL and MLS and NFL. I love going to the rink three times a week to watch my kid play. I’ll definitely buy tickets to a couple of Abbotsford Heat games this season to enjoy some good professional hockey. But *IF* the NHL comes back this year, it’s not getting my money. Or my attention. Both have already been spent elsewhere.