I see you’re locked out again. By my count this is your 4th work stoppage in the past 20 years. Do me a favor if you will please? Don’t bother letting me know when you come back. Because even if/when you do, I’m gone.
I was a deeper fan than most. You don’t know me, but my family definitely knows you. I have a younger brother that I watched rise through amateur hockey, through major junior, into the minors, and (briefly) into your league. He even played at Madison Square Garden against a guy named Gretzky. I’m assuming you’ve at least heard of him? Turns out he was pretty good.
I’m one of those fans who remembers what terms like “Old Barns” means in original six cities. Heck, I know what being an “Original Six” city means. I remember when Bobby Clarke wasn’t a member of the Flyer’s front office, he was the leader of the Broad Street Bullies. I remember names like Ron Dugay, Darryl Sittler, Harold Snepsts and Brad Marsh as players, not just the “glory” names like Orr, Esposito, or Dionne. I remember Doug Wilson as a Blackhawk. Same with Denis Savard. Heck, I even remember Jim Craig looking strange in the jersey of the Atlanta Flames after the Miracle on Ice. You remember the Atlanta Flames, don’t you? You know… The FIRST NHL team to leave Atlanta? The one before the Thrashers left to become the new Winnipeg Jets.
So yes, I think it’s safe to say I was a fan. And yes, I do still consider myself a hockey fan. Which is why I’m done with the NHL. You’ve become that family member that nobody wants to deal with or talk about anymore. You’ve become an embarrassment to the sport. We lost an entire season in the name of you “fixing the business model” with the last lockout. And here you are again saying the economics are “broken”. You know what? I don’t care anymore. I’m done. I imagine you’ll come back again at some point, but like I said… I’m gone. And really, it won’t be that hard. We all got a lot of practice the last time you pulled this crap.
Have we mentioned the National Football League has started their season? I’m sure you have. They’re the big dog when it comes to pro sports. Aside from that, I could easily run down a list of other sports but in truth, I’m not a huge basketball fan. I do however have satellite television and the internet. And thanks to a couple of trips to former British territories, I’ve come to be curious about soccer (or ‘football’ as it’s called over there) and cricket (That’s a whacky game I’m not sure I’ll ever get my head around). Not to mention I live in a state with several good college hockey programs, as well as easy access to not one but TWO OHL teams. So what am I going on about? It’s simple really. You’re gone, and I really don’t care anymore. I’ve found plenty of other things to occupy my interest. So… enjoy your lockout, because I know I will. Rather.. I mean it really won’t even matter to me anymore.
A former fan