Thursday, July 14, 2005

Finally, a Hockey Season!

At long last, it appears that the NHL is on the verge of a return to play on the ice. Before this happy moment could come, hockey fans have had to endure more than 300 days of sheer stupidity. From ESPN:
This lockout was worse than any in sports, dwarfing the one that cut the 1994-95 hockey season nearly in half and resulted in the agreement that expired last September.

In February, commissioner Gary Bettman canceled the season, making the NHL the first North American sports league to lose a year because of a labor dispute.

Stupid, pointless greed. Idiotic lowlights:
  • Players who complained the NHL deal was unfair left their million dollar contracts to play for one-tenth the amount in the minor leagues or in Europe. If it was okay to play there for less, why not in the NHL?
  • Owners complained about the spiraling salary costs. Well, who offers thos contracts to the players? The Tooth Fairy?
What's really stupid about all this is that hockey has traditionally been a distant fourth in the minds of sports fans, way behind baseball, football, and basketball. To make a whole season disappear was to make the game invisible when it was already the least visible, except that it was most visible only in the worst way- when either side was crying like the spoiled brats they are. As ever, Wayne Gretzky got it right in his comments:
"At the end of the day everybody lost," said Wayne Gretzky, the NHL's career scoring leader and the managing partner of the Phoenix Coyotes. "We almost crippled our industry. It was very disappointing what happened."

Time to close up the deal. Put this ugly chapter in the past and get on the ice.

2 comments:

Kevin said...

"What's really stupid about all this is that hockey has traditionally been a distant fourth in the minds of sports fans, way behind baseball, football, and basketball."

That would be a distant fifth, Nascar is ahead of all those except football.

Mike Kole said...

What are you trying to do, Kevin? Crush my spirit?

But, I was thinking team sports... and before you get into the various racing teams, I'm thinking teams that are based in cities, like the Indianapolis Colts or Pacers, or San Jose Sharks.