Well it's finally happened. Once a staple in the United States and considered one of the four major sports leagues along with the NFL, NBA and MLB, the NHL has now become extinct. Goodbye. Sayonara.
By now it's not a matter of if the NHL will cancel an ENTIRE season for the second time in seven years, but when. Corrupt owners and greedy players continue to argue over $182 million in a league that makes up to $3 billion in players' contracts and revenue.
Let's get something very clear to you NHL diehards. THE LEAGUE AND PLAYERS HATE YOU. THEY ARE SPITTING IN YOUR FACE, MAKING YOU WIPE UP THEIR CRAP AND LAUGHING ALL THE TIME. Even as the latest assortment of players and owners meet in what some actually believe have made some progress, the overall stench of this circus still rings like an air raid siren in our ears.
While the average die hard NHL fan is worrying about having money to feed their children or get gas or any other item that one needs to survive, the NHL owners and players are sitting with their feet kicked up, drinking a bottle of brandy and enjoying the nice vacation they produced by completely failing to understand the dynamics of living in today's world as a non-professional athlete.
At the beginning of this process, I found it hard to imagine that two sides that are supposedly run by intelligent human beings could get to a point where they would dare to cancel another full season in today's crippling economic times.
There was no way that the league or players would risk the success of the Winter Classic or the All-Star game. What a bumbling fool I was. Any faith I had in the common sense of these two basically criminal groups is long gone.
Dear NHL and Players Union: What do you have to say to the families of employees of the Columbus Blue Jackets who have supported an abortion of a franchise and were hoping to enjoy and reap the benefits of hosting the NHL All-Star game? Those employees have not had a paycheck since June. There are families that are starving and facing eviction because you can't agree on billions of dollars.
Now imagine that across the United States and Canada in NHL cities everywhere. Employees that were loyal to your brand and your league are now being bent over and taking it right up the butt because of your greed and corruption. Where is the apology to them and their kids, who most likely will not only go without Christmas gifts this year, but will be deciding on whether to pay for food or to heat the house?
I have long been a supporter of the NHL. I have defended a failure of a league and possibly the worst promotional efforts ever seen in the history of sports, year after year despite them giving me no reason to. I was hoping that the loyalty I have shown would be rewarded, yet every night I sit down to watch a Panthers-Capitals game or Rangers-Islanders or Flyers-Penguins, I see a blank freaking screen.
I am sorry but the efforts by fans and media everywhere claiming their disappointment over this lockout has not been strong enough either. Thinking about why makes me realize that 97 percent of human beings who watch sports could care less about hockey. Same with the media...even the media that gets paid to write about the NHL is barely keeping stories alive enough so the everyday fan can easily read about the latest updates.
Its not their fault. The sport they cover is a sham, a joke, an abortion.
As the latest talks between the elite NHL players and a few fair-minded owners continue, the die hard NHL junkie is praying to the god of what's still good left in sport to give us a season.
I hope for the sake of all the people who rely on the NHL to make a living that this lockout will end, but I also thought the NHL would never allow one of their few cash cows in the Winter Classic or All-Star game to be canceled.
The owners and players have together already destroyed 98 percent of their sport as far as relevancy and sponsors using their product to promote business. The nails are already in this coffin. If this last ditch hope ends with no deal and no season, the dirt gets thrown in and the grass starts to grow. Then the real die-hard fans can visit the "Here lies the NHL" tombstones across the country.
National Hockey League (NHL)
B. 1917 D. 2012
"Here lies the NHL—once one of the four major sports in the United States. At the height of its popularity, the NHL provided many sports fans with perhaps the most pure combination of league, team and players for their loyal fans to watch and take pride in. Players such as Gordie Howe, Maurice "Rocket" Richard, Wayne Gretzky, Bobby Orr, Mike Bossy and Mario Lemieux represented the NHL with class, dignity and pride.
However, greed, corruption and arrogance of both the players and owners led by commissioner Gary Bettman, destroyed the league. The NHL became the first major sport to cancel a season when they did so for the 2004-05 season due to an owner lockout of what they were afraid was escalating contracts and a need to control the spending they did themselves.
After both sides reached an agreement that was supposed to fix the problems, the owners once again locked out out the players prior to what was to be the 2012-13 season. Both sides were unable to reach a deal on a new labor agreement which led to another canceled season (2012-13). Sadly when a deal finally was reached the following summer, the league had to shut down due to lack of sponsors and fan support as season tickets for all franchises were canceled by the thousands."