How long can this go on?

How long can this go on?

Not surprisingly, I have given up on hockey. When they decide to get their acts together, I will come running back, but with the election, economy, and craziness of my personal life, I just do not have it in me to follow this garbage of a situation. With the election finally over, I have a little more energy to feed into petty bickering that currently makes up the whole of the NHL, but I still do it from the safe place of cynicism and of expecting nothing. Hockey is supposed to be a source to let all the frustrations of the day out, not add to it. It is a chance to focus on something that does not resemble my day to day struggles.

Lately, my day to day struggles take the form of arguments that I would rather avoid, or difficult conversations. Again, I hope this will fade with the election. It seems to me, and I am also guilty of this, that people comment on things that they know little about, and never really listen anyway. This is more frustrating for an educator. Not shocking, people only hear 25-50 percent of what is said to them. Whether or not we remember it is a totally different story. To add insult, I find that many times we aren't even really arguing about the same thing. The 2 opinions are not opposing of each other, they exist on a similar, but separate level, and trying to get someone to see that is like asking them to kill someone (although I think that might even be easier). I have made a commitment to getting better at recognizing this, but man is it hard when the other side is unwilling to do the same.

Such is the NHL and NHLPA. With millions of businesses who depend on the NHL as a source of income crumbling around them, they get nowhere while enjoying their billion dollar bank accounts. At this point, I find no prediction to be valid. The 2 sides just met for a few days straight, more than they have down since this got started, but I am still left without a sense of hope. Who knows, maybe they are right around the corner to an agreement, or maybe the 4 days of talks are just another house of cards.

What I can happily report on is the success our guys are having around the world. Most are leading their respective teams in point production, but some are also playing in lower level leagues. Kane is doing well in the Swiss Elite League, scoring 2 goals and notching 5 assists in his first 3 games. I look at this as a commitment to hockey, and hopefully a productive future for the young superstar.

The most promising of news comes from Stalberg, who is averaging more than a point a game in the Swedish Elite. In his first 8 games, Viktor notched 6 goals and 5 assists. This is very promising, and I am sure that he is itching to get back to the NHL. The lockout is maybe most hurtful to a player in Stalberg's situation, who was primed and ready to burst into the scene.

Frolik is in the Czech Republic and has 13 points in 14 games, which is good enough to be the leading scorer on the team. This lockout might even have been good for a player in Frolik's position. Hopefully, he has found his scoring touch again, and the confidence to let it translate to American hockey.

There others around the world. Hjalmer just left for Italy, Bickell is in Austria playing below his talent level, and so is Oduya in Thailand. It was thought to have been a joke when Johnny Oduya signed on to play in a tournament there.

I hear talks of a shortened season as a possible future for the NHL. While it stinks that it had to happen this way, I can see it working out well for the Hawks, and it would make for a healthier playoffs. Here's to getting the chance to see what Stalberg has to offer this year, and if Frolik can find his groove as a Blackhawk!

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  • We will have the shorten season. Just like 1995. And Ill get over it........just like i did in 1995.

    What really chaps my @ss is that I had my sights set on attending my third Winter Classic and they F'd that all up! Detroit v Toronto. I didnt know what I was looking forward to more....The game itself or the Alumni game!

    At this point, I hate the players, I hate the owners. Whats most frustrating about all of this is that I cant blame this all on Bettman. Dont get me wrong.....He has to go but there are bigger culprits than him in this mess.

    We willl be playing by January 10th.

    Take care all.


  • In complete seriousness One Team, I do feel bad for you and Detroit to lose that game this year. In general, I thought hockey in the US was on a nice upswing. It's probably never going to be competitive with the other sports, but with the growth of kids playing it, I saw a nice steady growth happening that i believe will stall. That said, the shorter season probably favors your "veteran" team. LOL

    I don't know, HH, that I will come running back. Since the lockout, I have started to watch a lot of college hockey and have gone to quite a few ECHL games here in Vegas. See as how the Wranglers suck so far this year, it sorta brings back some nostalgia of the final years of Wirtz Sr. when the team was a drag and the arena was never full. If center ice has a reduced price, that will be the only money I spend that goes to the NHL this year and maybe next year too. I've just applied for grad school as well and if I get in, that will be a lot less NHL hockey I watch for the next few years anyway.

    In principal, I have been with the players from the start and I still contend it is the owners stupidity that has brought things to where they are. That said, I lost a lot of sympathy when the revenue sharing got to 50/50. At some point, I have to wonder, who is the PA really working for? The smaller amount of players who make ridiculous money, or the majority whose salaries are tethered to reality. I'm not quite sure at this moment.

  • I appreciate the sentiments about the Classic. The only thing I didnt look forward to was the fact that it was at the Big House and Ann Arbor sucks. I guess it isnt all bad, I saved 1K for the 4 tix I was buying.

    I thought I would share an odd thing I read the other day. Just as I was cutting Bettman a little slack, I read this: 7:40AM EST November 16. 2012 - Commissioner Gary Bettman has suggested to NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr that the two sides take a two-week break from negotiations.

    Is he F'ing SERIOUS!?! Every single day, more and more of his NHL erodes and his suggestion is to.......TAKE TWO WEEKS OFF!? What a complete jack@ss!

    Fortunately, the owners and players ignored him (per usual) and have been meeting over the last couple days. I still think this is close to happening. Perhaps a little wishful thinking but I get a sense that this isnt that far off (at least not as far as it was in 2004)

    Vegas- I had been thinking the same thing about my veteran squad. This could be the best thing for them! Lol! Half season of play leaves plenty in the tank for a playoff run. Unfortunately, there has been a massive changing of the guard in Detroit with the departure of Lidstrom and I will have to see what new team character developes. Regardless, it is a dawn of a new era.

    Is it crazy to think......but I kinda want the season to start just to see the Wild play with that new roster!

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