Article written by Sportmentary - Editor in Chief Sportmentary Online Sports Talk
We can now stick a fork in the NHL lockout. After 113 days of this brutal and ridiculous stalemate that has damaged their brand, the NHL and NHLPA agreed to a tentative deal in the early morning hours of January 6th, 2013. The deal still needs to be put in writing and ratified by the owners and players.
Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr, the two clowns responsible for dragging each other and the game through mud, can now go to work repairing the damage that they've created. It might be a long time before the NHL returns to its glory days or has record breaking years (revenues) like it did in the 2011/12 season.
For hockey/NHL loyalists like me, the news is great. I can't wait for the puck to drop. This shortened season will create lots of drama. Every game will be very important and teams will be fighting for a playoff berth the moment the puck drops.
Even for a fan like me, the lockout has left a bitter taste in my mouth. I'd like to see some changes and new faces for the NHL. It's time for Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr to leave the game. Fair or not seeing their mugs makes me want to hurl. I'm sure I'm not alone in that. These two are now the faces of one of the darkest chapters in the league's history. They must resign or be forced out.
As I said, I will not turn back on the NHL like the players and owners did to the fans but I'm angry and bitter with how the lockout was handled. I'm, bitter about how long the lockout lasted. I'm angry with the damage that Bettman and Fehr have done to the game. I can't stand to see Betmman and Fehr's faces.
So now I've vented again and hopefully for the last time about this lockout. It's now time to look to the future. It's time to get excited about seeing NHL hockey. I'm excited that I will be writing about something other than the NHL lockout. I'm excited that I will be writing about people other than Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr.
I hope that Bettman and Fehr, the faces of rubbish and garbage in the NHL go away. I Hope that these people who've stunk up the airwaves and online sports pages for so long stay in the background and spare us from seeing their faces any more.
I hope that the game rebounds quickly from any damage that Bettman and Fehr have caused to it. I think the only way to do that is for new faces to emerge as leaders of the league. We need new people who understand the game and understand how to rebuild the NHL into a winner.
We need guys who will know how to navigate through a new Collective Bargaining Agreement and negotiation when this one expires. We need guys who know how to avert another black eye on the game we love.