Its been a tumultuous summer for me. I won't bore you with the details. Here we are about 2 weeks before the season is about to start. This post will not be a preview or a prediction, but a bunch of things (some crazy) that have been swirling around my head the past few months.
When hockey season ended, my broken leg did not heal magically. I was still all movement-inhibited, except there wasn't much on TV ... except for baseball. This was before the Mets epic injury mammoth (bug doesn't do it justice). Anyway, so I'm watching baseball a lot and just kept thinking, what if NHL players could only use wood bats..er sticks.
Stay with me for a sec - The reason that pro baseball only uses wood bats is a safety issue (they don't want pitchers getting killed by line drives). Granted, that logic doesn't work for the NHL. The only thing getting harmed by the one-piece wonder sticks are goalie GAAs. But wouldn't it be nice to see players battle for a puck and not see a stick break and then not see the expected slashing call? If the NHL went to wood sticks only, would we see a huge decline in scoring? Probably not, Jason Spezza does alright. I guess the trade off would be that no curve would be illegal. How about that? What if players could use either a wood stick or a composite, but the wood stick would have no limitations? Chara would have a 7 foot tall piece of lumber. Kovy might have a Sherwood Original that looked like a spoon. Its not logical and its unnecessary, but this is what you think about when you are couch-ridden with a broken leg for most of the summer.
Are you still reading? Ok, here's more
There will probably be another work stoppage/strike/lockout in 2012. Its not just because of the Paul Kelly firing. But once the Hossa deal was "investigated" by the NHL, you had to know something was up. Here's the thing: The NHL owners "won" the last CBA. They got their salary cap. They got players to roll back salaries (remember that 24%) and put 55% of their pay in escrow. The owners got a lot of stuff. They players didn't fare too badly. They still get paid damn well. And that should be enough. But owners are still losing money (I'm not going to comment on the Coyotes or the Islanders) and so the system still isn't good enough. Some GMs (with their owners blessing, I'm sure) found "loopholes" in cap system. Remember, a loophole is still legal. So, teams are locking up players for a longer deals in order to have a lower cap hit. I fail to see the problem. Its a good thing that fans get their favorite players on their team for long periods of time. Its something that fans can look forward to. It gives their team an identity. I get that front-loading contracts gives cash-heavy teams an advantage, but there will always be some advantage. In a nutshell, the reason there will be a work stoppage is because the players don't like the CBA because of the cap and the escrow and the owners don't like it because it wasn't airtight enough. Have fun watching the KHL in 2012. I know Ovy is sneaky happy.
There's more, but its only Monday. I need to spread myself out. I'm still on the DL, so I'm sure more crazy thoughts will come to me.