For diehard fans this continues to be a difficult time, this lock-out business. So many have so much interested in the sport. It is entertainment, a social platform, for fans to connect with each other, and in their own way, the game and its players. Those fans will still be there when the dust eventually settles. Its the fringe fans who are the problem because they no longer seem to care and have moved on to other things. Basically they’re apathetic now. My name is Mike, and I could give a rat’s arse how long this drags on.
With an empty pint in-hand, I’m become completely disenfranchised with the whole situation. I am tired of talking about the stupid lock-out (yes, I see the irony in that I am now writing about a subject I have just said I don’t care about). I try to avoid talking about the NHL, and loathe being dragged into a conversation. Typical conversation:
NHL FAN – “So, what do you think about the lock-out?”
Me – “The whole thing is ridiculous. They just need to settle.”
NHL FAN – “Yeah, Bettman’s a real (insert explative).”
Me (trying not to sound rude) – “Yeah, I can’t even talk about it anymore.” (pretending to be so infuriated that I can’t bring myself to carry on this discussion for fear of vomitting – it’s the only way out!)
I once cared about hockey, back in the “good ‘ole days”. It was a great sport with great players who I looked up to, none more than the lone sports “hero” I’ve held all my life – Stevie Y. For me, he epitomized all that was right in sports. An unassuming, mild-mannered guy who stayed with his team through thick and thin, while playing at an extremely high level. He wasn’t alone either. It just seemed things were different then, in the 80’s and 90’s, and the guys who played then weren’t in it just for the money, as naive as that sounds. And the owners, well, I’m not sure much has changed with them.
I am not venting with the purpose of discussing the merits of the current lock-out, and I don’t care to discuss who’s right and who’s a bigger idiot. Judging by the fact that you are still reading this, it is quite likely that you are in fact still interested in that discussion. All the power to you. If I was more in love with the game like I once was, I would feel more like you do. But that was then and this is now. I have less time to deal with nonsense these days, so this lock-out is completely off-limits for me.
I guess I’m apathetic. Apathetic to the owners, apathetic to the players, and apathetic to the game in general. Perhaps when it comes back we’ll see another “NEW NHL” and I’ll start watching again. But as it stands now, my pint is dry and that’s never a good thing.
Don’t forget to catch LWOS’s “Puckheads: The Hockey Show” on Last Word Radio every Wednesday at 10pm EST, featuring Ben Kerr and Max Vasilyev who will give you the full information on the lockout. Follow me on Twitter – @LastWordOnSport