I’m fine with Buttman’s proclamation that Sept 15 is lockout deadline day. Because if it happens, we won’t have to go through a long training camp with about fifty different hopefuls giving it their all until such time when they’re sent back to a lesser league, light years from the bigs. Back to reality for these kids. The dream is once again put on hold for a whole whack of them.
And we also won’t have to go through eight preseason games with many of these fifty hopefuls taking turns suiting up for games, with people like you and me (okay, maybe not me, unless they come to Powell River), shelling out a bunch of money and not recognizing most of them. Tickets for preseason games filled with hopefuls who probably won’t make the team should go for about ten bucks, not a hundred.
I get tired of preseason real quick. All I want to see is the big club, with the one or two new guys who have cracked the lineup, and everyone plays hard together for a few quality weeks as they rev up for the regular season. But no, an army of them has to be weeded through first. Can’t this be done at another time and just let the real team get on with it instead?
Imagine if Montreal did this and nobody else. They’d be out of the gate like Speedy Gonzales. Like they’d just cranked up some of Walter White’s blue crystal meth.
Last year in Canadiens preseason action, they were a really lousy two wins and six losses, and it definitely was a sign of things to come. They sucked way before the real season began, and they sucked for most of the six months after that. And although they pounded Tampa Bay 5-1 in their final exhibition and played a fine game, their preseason record should be buried in a deep hole and covered with cement.
So the lockout officially begins on Sept. 15th, which is great, providing Buttman and Donald Fehr and the gang get everything figured out by early October. That’s three extra weeks to smarten up, and we can still get a full season in without all the preseason weeding-out.
(Question - Who gets the preseason gate and concession money - owners or players, or is it shared? I’m asking because I don’t know).