You know, I didn’t sleep well last night, as you can tell by my 3am tweet on my non-hockey Twitter account about the movie Sahara. I considered staying up for a while to see if anything was truly going to happen with CBA negotiations. Nah, I thought – it might get done within the next few days, but not tonight. Well, I guess it was technically this morning, but we’ll have a hockey season again! I’m excited!
What’s that? Why am I not raging at them for taking so long? Or declaring they’ll never get my money again, or any of the other hyperbolic statements you’ve been hearing (or making)? I’ve had my moments, especially after some of the really stupid statements have come out, but I knew I’d come back. When the league is good, it’s the best hockey played by the best players in the world. It’s FUN. So why not watch it? So you can sound like you are making some grand statement? Will you enjoy that more than a Vanek snipe, or RJ call of Miller robbing a dude? Have fun, I guess. I’ll be over here, waking my kids again when Pomiville scores an OT winner.
I’ll have to reacquaint myself with the roster again – I did say I wouldn’t be checking in until things were done, and I mostly kept to that. I know some other folks (especially ones that live in Rochester) have been doing solid work tracking the Amerks and our boys overseas, but I didn’t have the time to cover all of those different leagues. I’ll be looking forward to talking real actual Sabres hockey with all of you again, and hey, maybe I’ll see you again in the press box. (might have to get some well-read posts here, or my stats will look pathetic when I submit them!)
So, yeah, lockout. I find myself particularly unmoved by either side of the equation this time around. I can never understand how the negotiations move so slowly, always start later than seems logical, involve only a few actual meetings, and seem to treat an actual deadline as something of a suggestion. Both can say they are all about the fans, but we’re being condescended to. The only honest one out there so far (that I’ve seen) is Paul Bissonette. He pointed out that the players are trying to protect their futures, which I get. Especially for a plug like BizNasty, who will likely never make big bucks (for a pro athlete), and may have a short career thanks to a major part of his job is being pummeled in the head. The owners, of course, have every right to want to make as much money as possible. I do have some trouble believing their accounting on some of this, but the fact is, it is a business for them, even if they are fans too. I could imagine that Terry Pegula’s “if I want to make money, I’ll drill another well” probably went over well with Jeremy Jacobs and his ilk.
Anyway, now that the lockout is on, and the owners pulled the “this deal is only valid until tomorrow!” card out of the deck, I don’t expect much of anything to happen for a couple of months. I can’t think the league will want to lose the Winter Classic, though that would be hilarious since Toronto’s involved. But with little actual negotiating happening week to week, who knows at this point. My interest wanes with every passing day, and football season is here for now. I’ll see what’s up after Thanksgiving, or when the Bills are eliminated from playoff contention, whichever comes first.
Hey, this thing is still here! I’ve been quiet on the Sabres blogging front here, because aside from the Dev Camp scrimmage, little of interest has been happening in these parts. And looming over everything is the potential lockout. I started out fairly positive that things would be resolved mostly on time. The words being said about the process were positive, and not so excessive that it seemed one side was fighting the other in the media. Progress from the last time around! But it’s still dragging, and the numbers being thrown around are still in the “I’m going to ask for whatever the expert said it’s worth” phase on Pawn Stars.
The last lockout was particularly painful for me. I started watching hockey as a kid, but grew away from it as the game bogged down and got boring. I went to a few games once I moved here, thanks to Adelphia giving away free tickets to it’s employees (my friends) like candy on Halloween. I really got back into things in the playoff run leading up to the lockout, though. I loved watching the Flames and the Lightning, and I was ready to be a full-fledged fan again…and then I got gut-punched. I toughed it out, past the ridiculous posturing, stupid rumor bloggers and basketball.
What’s coming up next, though? It looks more and more like this season doesn’t start on time. I was quite enjoying the pressbox on the rare occasions I could get in there and was looking forward to seeing the progression of that this season. It’s also pretty hard to build up my kids as fans when the game randomly disappears for months (or a whole year) at a time. I’m not one to blog about the ‘negotiations’ between the NHL and NHLPA so this space will probably be somewhat dark barring major player movement or something similar.