Ladies and gentlemen, I implore you.
Any hope from this week was utterly destroyed on Thursday night. The owners rejected the players' latest offer, took agreed-upon terms off the table, and stated that contract term limits was "the hill [they] would die on."
Maybe they will. That's how it feels at the moment. The NHLPA hired Don Fehr to be the guy that doesn't blink in the face of looming disaster, and to his credit (or detriment, depending on how you feel right now) he hasn't. And if the NHL isn't going to budge, and the NHLPA isn't going to budge... well...
I think reader Speedy_McEachern summed up the reasons for the standoff best:
Do you know how many NHL players have contracts longer than 7 years right now?
22 players out of 660+ currently have contracts longer than 7 years. Is that really an issue worth losing more money over at this point?
At this point, we're hung up because stubbornness is trumping common sense on both sides.
So, this is the hill I'm going to die on: I'm done. I can't handle talking about this situation any more. It's reached nonsensical proportions for me. I'll talk about the NHL when the NHL is playing games again, and not a second before--because, frankly, nonsense doesn't deserve my attention. And it doesn't deserve yours, either.
I hope you'll join me.
There's a Binghamton Senators game tonight, and another tomorrow. We'll have a Game Day Thread open for both. I would love for you to join us in there. If not, that's cool too. But I implore you to do something else with your time. Go out and play some hockey yourself. Get in touch with the game you love. Or read a book. Or play with your kids. Or go talk to that person you want to talk to but haven't yet. Tell them Mark told you to say hi. There's your icebreaker. When they ask who Mark is, you tell them you tell them I'm your Internet Life Coach. When they look at you funny, just laugh and tell them, not really, he's just a buddy of yours.
The NHL will be back at some point. We can enjoy it then. Maybe more because we've missed it. I'd like to leave you with this thought from my favorite book, The Count of Monte Cristo:
There is neither happiness nor misery in the world; there is only the comparison of one state with another, nothing more. He who has felt the deepest grief is best able to experience supreme happiness. We must have felt what it is to die, Morrel, that we may appreciate the enjoyments of living. Live, then, and be happy, beloved children of my heart, and never forget that until the day when God shall deign to reveal the future to man, all human wisdom is summed up in these two words, -- `Wait and hope.'