Tuesday, August 28, 2012

NHL fans are more powerless than ever

The NHL (probably) won't play hockey this season. That's because, as every (all-knowing) American will tell you, "It's a business. We're just fans."

Yes. That's the rhetoric all American sports fans have come to know. Business is business, and professional (*cough, and college, *cough) sports are no exception.

The players are employees. The owners have a business to run and, of course, there is money to be made (fought over). The fans are just ... well, what the hell are we?

Fans don't have a say in collective bargaining talks. If they did, there never would be lockouts. Fans just spectate, observe and walk home empty-handed.

By that logic, fans are just foolish drunkards waiving things at familiar objects passing by them at a rink, field or what have you. Powerless. Dishing out hard-earned cash to take their 10-year-old child to see Alexander Ovechkin sit on the bench.

OK, I won't go there.

But the point is made. Hockey fans will just sit and watch another lockout happen with nothing to say about it and no way to stop it from happening next season, or even next offseason.

The NHL has spent the past two decades trying to engage it's fringe fans while simultaneously scaring the hell out of actual hockey fans. Guess what: This league has actually succeeded in losing its second or third batch of fringe fans and confusing its actual fans.

Yes, Detroit Red Wings fans, that means you. You are probably confused right now about why you care so much for a league whose owners, commissioner(s)(?) and players care nothing for you, your entertainment, your time-spent and your 10-year-old child.

But of course, you can't take it so personally. It's a business, after all. Nothing personal about it. (Repeat it softly in your head)

Sure, business harbors some of the most personal aspects in life, but let's forget that for the time being and focus on the "logic" of this situation.

*crickets*

OK, well, let's focus on at least one thing that makes sense here other than, "We want money. No, we need it. But we need it because we do all the work. Yeah, but we sign the papers ... etc. etc. etc. ... "

*crickets*

OK. Step back. This is what happens. This is what we want as sports fans (Americans/Canadians). We want high-paid athletes and rich owners. We need it in order to survive. Winning is nothing. Money is everything. (Repeat softly in your head)

Hockey is a vehicle. Sports is a vehicle. You are just a spectator.

Enjoy.

With that being said, how can the Red Wings shore up the blue line? (*Face hits palm) Life goes on ...

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