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I think Bettman has done an awful job, but the fact of the matter is it doesn't matter who the Commissioner is, if the owners want a lockout they are going to get one.
As for Fehr, he may have almost ruined baseball, but he should also get credit for the years of labor peace since the 94-95 strike. Baseball has an agreement in place that ensures 21 straight years of labor peace. We can only hope he has the same effect on the NHL.
I realize that Mike. I'm just frustrated with the entire situation as a whole (like we all are). All I know is every time the labor agreement has expired under Bettman we have had a lockout. To me that is not acceptable, unfortunately that probably gains him even more popularity with the owners. I won't get into my hatred of corporate America as a whole on here, but let me just say that each and every owner of this league needs to be held more accountable for their actions if it's true that only 9 teams turned a profit last year. You can't tell me with us fans paying $200 a ticket to go to a game, or $300 to $400 a jersey that the pie isn't big enough so everyone can get their piece of it, on top of the ridiculous amounts of money these teams have offered to free agents at the end of every year over ridiculous time periods. It's a real shame, because in my opinion a lockout at this time will hurt the sport even more then 04-05.
In a time now, when prices are escalating while most salaries are not, I can see a backlash from the fans when the season begins. I wouldn't be surprised to see arenas half full. I think more and more people don't have compassion for greedy millionaires. It's that simple.
All the owners and most of the players are very rich - and now they're arguing over who gets more money. Don't get me wrong - in the conference room, it's business. I understand that. But from the outside? From a fan's perspective? From the people who are doing their best to make a living, this whole thing seems f ucking ridiculous...and very unnecessary.
What's your guess? If and when the season starts, will there be full arenas? Will the fans flock to see live hockey again?
Exactly, if the NHL and the PA were smart they would end this nonsense as soon as possible. They are going to have a lot harder time explaining this one to their fans then in 04-05.
Personally, I have been a hockey fan since birth, and couldn't imagine not going to watch an NHL game because to me there is nothing like it. Not all people feel the same however, and I think a lot of the casual fans who have come along in the last few years will start to disappear, but more importantly I think some of the die hards will start to cut back as well. Hockey fans are a loyal group, but their is only so much people can take. I just hope that both parties realize all this, and STOP taking our support for granted.
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