Chris Note: Spurred on by a kick-a$$ movie poster by Josh Howard, this is part two of a four part series showcasing our feelings on Bettman and the NHL.
Since Bettman became the NHL commissioner, he has announced a lockout 3 times. The only thing he has done more often is reluctantly hand over the Stanley Cup to a Detroit Red Wings captain. When I heard about his September 15 deadline, I was in Alaska fishing. Yes, I was in one of the most pristine and beautiful places on earth and I couldn’t get my eyes off of Twitter. I was looking for news on the lockout, free agents and when Shane Doan’s next deadline for setting a deadline was.
Why? Why didn’t I just enjoy myself? Because I frigging love hockey, that’s why.
And so do you. That’s why you’re here. You want to vent your frustration because you’ve poured so much of yourselves into this league and for what? Another damn lockout. We keep paying for higher ticket sales. We buy Center Ice. We tolerate Pierre McGuirre. And we get another lockout.
Hit the jump for more from Twig:
Think about the fans of other teams. The teams that have been terrible since they came into the league. Teams that wear a different third jersey every year just so they can generate additional revenue. No matter how ugly those things are, fans will buy them. We wear them around town, turning ourselves into human billboards for a league that never hesitates to piss on us.
I hate Bettman. I hate him because he threatened Al Sobotka with a $10,000 fine for swinging an octopus over his head. “It wrecks the ice” he says. And the Arizona heat doesn’t, troll? Think about that for a second: The commissioner of the NHL was worried about the zamboni driver of one team enhancing the enjoyment of the fans. Rather than point to Al and say that he is the gold standard for zamboni drivers (which he is), he threatened him.
I hate him for the angry look he had on his face when Detroit stomped Pittsburgh 5-0 in game 5 of the 2009 Cup Finals. I hate him for grinning from ear to ear when he gave the cup to Crosby two games later. I hate him for suspending Datsyuk and Lidstrom for not attending the All-Star game. I hate him for the little things and the big things.
My friend, a commenter here, says it best:
“I love hockey, but I hate the NHL.”
And that’s all I have on Bettman.
Click here for part one with Drew, Josh and Jordan. Sully and I wil have posts upcoming.