Sunday Conversation: NHL Lockout: A Little Right. A Little Wrong.
The above video appeared on CBC in mid August. Not much has changed since then.
This article isn’t about taking sides, or making either one look better than the other. It’s also not about who’s going to suffer the most, or why this lockout is foolish, which it is. It’s about a better understanding of what’s taken place to get us where we are right now, and why both sides are right, and why both sides are wrong. On Friday morning as I was driving to a meeting I happened to put on NHL Home Ice just as former Florida Panther head coach Doug MacLean was coming on. Not knowing what Doug was going to talk about, I listened. He has just the right amount of passion, smarts, and dry humor to always catch my attention, and this time was no different. My summary is not verbatim, just my interpretation of what was being said. I’m not an expert on the situation, nor do I hold MacLean as the expert either. I do believe however that his points, which are directed at both sides make sense (I feel like that was my disclaimer).
The bulk of his time on the air focused around the NHL lockout and how the league and players found itself to be in the position that they’re in. Most of what separates the two sides is money of course. Each wants more, and neither appears to be too interested in making concessions to accept less. There’s been a great deal of discussion about the math and the numbers that separate the two sides, and that was one of the first things that Doug had trouble with. One side says that it’s a 7% spread that keeps the two apart, while the other side claims it’s 17.5% keeping them at odds. Like me, Doug has a hard time understanding how two intelligent men can be so far off…but they are. Read the rest of this entry
Fans Are Not A Doormat
Livid. Frustrated. Concerned. Exhausted. Sick. Helpless.
If you’re like me, the above emotions describe exactly how you’ve been feeling over the last few months. You’re nauseated over the site of Gary Bettman at a podium. You hear the words “wide” and “gap” paired together and you suddenly want to punch the nearest wall. You imagine an October with no hockey and you want to crawl into a hole and not come out until play resumes.
But most of all, you feel completely and utterly helpless. That’s the worst part of this never-ending labor mess for me. I have friends (some hockey fans, some not) come up and ask “so how are things looking, you think?” and all you can do is shrug and muster a “not good.” That response has not changed during any point of the CBA negotiations. Perhaps in some twisted sense, it’s better that way seeing as how we haven’t really had reason to get our hopes up. At the same token, though, enough is enough. When is there going to be a light at the end of the tunnel for the die-hards? Read the rest of this entry