Mailbag: When will the madness end?

Q: At what point do both sides realize they are really messing up the game? Both sides are trying to win this PR battle, but we are so **** (Dave edit, sorry) sick of this. We just want hockey.

A: I honestly thought that neither side would be stupid enough to cancel the Winter Classic. That is their big money maker, and without it their revenues go in the toilet. However, that is now on the chopping block, with rumors saying it will be gone as early as Monday. When that goes, there is nothing preventing the owners from holding out for the entire year. As for the players, they are united behind Donald Fehr, so they will do what he recommends. Considering he was the union rep behind five MLB work stoppages, I’m pretty sure he won’t “crack” either.

Q: What alternatives do I have? I obviously can’t watch the Rangers and college hockey is barely televised. MSG just started showing some KHL games, so I guess that’s a plus.

A: Well those KHL games will likely be a bit more popular as the lockout extends into its third month. I’d expect MSG to pick up some more games, especially those that have Ryan McDonagh involved. You can get streams of the Connecticut Whale games online from various places. Those are likely your best bet, as you can watch Chris Kreider, J.T. Miller, and Kyle Jean. The Whale will have the players most ready for the NHL. I don’t know of any streams for the SEL (Oscar Lindberg, Jesper Fast). There are streams for the OHL (Peter Ceresnak), QMJHL (Sam Noreau), and WHL (Michael St. Croix, Shane McColgan) floating around, but I don’t know where.

Q: How long until Dylan McIlrath returns from his injury?

A: As far as I know, he should be back before the new year. His knee injury is progressing, and the good news is that there doesn’t appear to be any lasting damage. I’m excited to see him work under Jeff Beukeboom. They both play/played similar styles, so the kid can learn a lot from someone who made a living out of protecting Brian Leetch.

Q: Who do I blame for this lockout? What can I do with my spare time now that I can’t go to games?

A: You can blame everyone for this lockout. Blame Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr, Steven Fehr, Bill Daly, Jeremy Jacobs, the owners, the players. Blame everyone. No one party is at fault here, but it appears that the owners are the more divided group of the two. I’d also like to blame Allan Walsh, but that’s mostly because his tweets are getting relatively annoying now. As for what to do with your spare time, I can’t answer that. Spend time with your family or something.

Q: When/If this insanity ends, where do you think the Rangers will finish? Was last year a fluke?

A: Last year was not a fluke. The Rangers are definitely trending up, and I don’t mean that in any biased manner. They may have overachieved, but they are certainly the most balanced team in the East. They have elite goaltending to go with one of the best defensive cores in the league (not to mention the youngest). With the addition of Rick Nash, for what amounts to two bottom-six players on the Rangers, the Rangers should finally have that balanced scoring that they were lacking. Their style of play (aggressive forechecking 2-1-2 style) is better suited when they have players that can finish. I think the Penguins, Flyers, and Bruins are all capable of beating the Rangers in a seven game series though.

7 Responses to “Mailbag: When will the madness end?”

  1. Mikeyyy says:

    Nice post. But I blame the owners.

    They are the ones that won’t sit with the union and taking a hard line stance.

    So it stands like this.

    NHL won’t sit with the nhlpa.
    NHL required that they use their deal
    NHL rejected 3 viable offers

    It seems very obvious to me. People keep saying you need two sides to want to make a deal.

    From everything I have read…the players latest request was to meet for a discussion with no preconditions. The NHL said they have to use their contract mostly intact.

    Sounds to me like the owners need to lose more cash. The players are finding work. The owners are not.

    And let’s be realistic, it’s the owners fault they can’t get a profit. They are the ones that make the crazy offers to players. And they are the same ones whining about money.

    At some point the owners will crack. And this outage will cost bettman his 8mil per year job.

  2. Walt says:

    It’s Bettman’s fault, along with Snider, and Jacobs, real trash the whole lot are!

    The players gave back to the NHL the last time around, to the tune of some 25%. They lost plenty, and gave in to the cap system. The system in place was put there by the owners, and the profits were record numbers.

    How in good faith could a player sign a contract, only to have the owners come back at them and say “We need to get back from you some 15-20% in order to make more money” I stated this before, and I’ll state it again, no one put a gun to the head of these owners, and forced them to make the $98 million offers to Parisi, and Suter. Snider made the offer to Weber of $117 million, forcing Nashville to match it. Snider knew they were going to make these demands of the players, why then make the offer? Easy, he is a scumbag, along with Bettman, Jacobs, and the lot.

    I have never been a supporter of unions, but in this case I’m with them. If the players give in again, what makes anyone think that the owners won’t do it again when this contract expires? Your not dealing with honorable people. Snider is the worst of them all. He ownes NBC, forced Jay Leno to guve back millions, in order for the crew of his show be assured their jobs. Ed Snider should rot in hell, along with that sawed off piece of sh*t Buttman!

  3. george says:

    Nicely done. I put the blame on the players. They got a decent offer (50-50) but made 3 counters nowhere close to that.

    As for the last question, I feel that the flyers could not beat the rangers in a 7 game series. The flyers defense has gotten weaker since last year with the loss of matt carle, chris pronger’s concussion problem and bryzgolov goaltending issues. The addition of Nash has made the rangers a lot better.

  4. Rickyrants13 says:

    The owners are showing us that they dont care about us When are the fans gonna wake up and show them how we feel about them. I have allready made a pledge not to give them my money this year. And if this goes the whole year they will never see my money again. And anyone who doesnt do the same deserves all of this.

  5. Rickyrants13 says:

    The lack of posts in here Tells an even bigger story. You really should make a post on what the Lockout is doing to your fans and how much we will be willing to forgive the Owners and how everyone is planning on showing them how they feel

  6. Sioux-per-man says:

    I put the blame on the owners, and Bettman as their puppet. I agree to the 50 – 50 split, I think that is fair for both sides. Even if it took 2 years to get to that point. But to have the owners/Bettman demand that they get there now and have the players take a 12% pay cut, without a plan to make up the lost income. Escrow it and pay it back to the players that took the cut. With over 450 contract expiring over the next 2 years. You would think they could work a compromise.

    Bettman’s EGO has a way of saying “MY WAY or the HIGHWAY”. The owners win – they have all the power. They can lock the players out. And the players lose 100% of their salary for this year.

    The fans lose, and the Ranger fans take the biggest loss, THIS YEAR, now that this team is set up for a Championship run. I have a hard time believing that Dolan is on the same page as Bettman. As one of the richest teams in the league, this has to feel like “someone else” problem.

    The CBA needs a plan to protect the owners from themselves. They are driving up the cost of players salaries, signing 15 year contracts, and taking advantages of loop holes.

    Let’s face it, don’t look foward to a season this year, or even next year. Either way Bettman has to go. The FANS hate him, the players hate him, and now he is costing the owners money. I wouldn’t be surprised if Dolan hates him :)

    Persoanally I won’t be buying tickets, or jersey’s, or center ice packages – till Bettman is fired. Not a nickel will come out of my pocket.

  7. Sioux-per-man says:

    The Flyers could beat the Rangers in a 7 game series??? – when they couldn’t beat them 1 game last year? Really. I think the Flyers are a weaker team than they were the year before.

    But we won’t find out this year will we?????