The NHL Lockout and Divorce

So as most of you all know we are in a state of crisis when it comes to the NHL and the NHLPA.  These two sides can’t seem to agree and of course we the fans of hockey are not getting to see our favorite teams and players play the game we all love so dearly.  Now normally I have dedicated this blog to stories of being a parent and my experiences in life, so to write something about the NHL Lock Out is not something most people would expect to see but they actually are related and I will get to that now.


Sometimes when couples go through a divorce or separation things will turn quite nasty, especially when lawyers, mediators, and other people get involved.  Throughout this process pride, stubbornness, and sometimes anger end up leading the way and certain things are forgotten.  When divorce happens there are so many emotions that can get in the way of progress that some of the most important people involved get forgotten in the shuffle.  Of course I am referring to the children, most of the time in negotiations they can be used as pawns, they can be completely forgotten, or they can simply be treated as assets.  Is this right?  Is it fair?  Both answers are a very big NO, but for some reason it happens.


So today as I followed the ups and downs of the NHL and NHLPA negotiations and went from an excited “This could be it!!  Hockey could be coming back!!” to a completely devastated “Nope, no progress!!  The season is probably lost!!” a thought came to me.  We the fans of the NHL are the children and the NHL and the NHLPA are the fighting parents!!


Think about it, both parties are guilty of using us as pawns by playing the PR game.  They leak information to get us excited and want to take their side.  They use social media and tell us how they care about us and how they want to get a deal done only to go into a negotiating session and come out with no progress.  Sounds like one parent trying to sway a child to want to side with them over the other parent doesn’t it!!


They treat us like an asset, they assume that the 3.3 Billion Dollars of Hockey Related Revenue is going to stay at the number and only grow.  It seems like they expect us to simply come back and sellout arenas, they can continue to take our money and we are just going to automatically come back like nothing happened.  They claim to care about us but in reality we are simply the revenue that they are so desperately fighting for.  Again, two parents fighting over money and assets that simply think that all this battling will have no impact on their kids at all.


Many of us will agree to this point, both parties are guilty of completely forgetting about who got them to where they are right now.  Who’s income has help build this league and game into the great sport that it is now.  They have left us the fans out of the picture completely, they don’t want to hear what we have to say, and even if they did listen to us they wouldn’t take what we have to say into account in their negotiations.  Again the forgotten children of divorce have to simply wait and see what happens and have absolutely nothing to say about the matter they just have to accept the results.


There is one sport that I have noticed over the years that actually listens to the fans.  The UFC president Dana White does a fantastic job of listening and responding to the fans.  If there is a bad event and the fans complain about it via social media he is right there with them listening to them and apologizing for it.  If the fans want to see a fight happen between two elite fighters and voice their desire to see this fight Dana White will listen and do whatever he can to make that fight happen.  If only Gary Bettman or Donald Fehr would be so gracious to listen to their fans they would know that we want them to lock themselves in a room and not come out until a deal is done.  We don’t want grandstanding and PR, we want our game back, so why not take a tip from the UFC and listen to your fans for once and get a deal done.


Stop being the neglectful and angry parents that are so obsessed with getting their way that they are willing to put their own children at risk.  As many children that have gone through similar experiences with their parents and have grown up will tell you that we won’t forget this.  We are more than pawns and assets, and without us you will have nothing in the long run!!


Part of me would really like to see someone start a campaign to market to season ticket holders for every single team in the league.  Convince them to sign a petition stating that we want the season to start by this date or we will not renew our season tickets for one year.  If you could get 60% of the ticket holders to do that and then send the petition to both the League and the Players Association do you think they would listen to the forgotten children then??


All the best!


There Are So Many Great People Out There

So since I started writing this blog it has always been a kind of solo venture for me.  I was using this a way for me to put together my thoughts and whether it was read or appreciated by anyone else didn’t really matter to me.  My goal was to just put my story out there so I could look back on it one day and remember the lessons I have learned and all of the good times and bad.

As time has gone by and each post has been written, posted, and read something really great ended up happening.  People started reading what I was writing and seemed to really like what I had posted (well at least I hope they like it).  I also took to social media and started meeting some amazing people with their own stories to tell, and through all of this I have met so many amazing people and each one of them have taught me something and given me a gift that I will always appreciate.

Last night I had the opportunity to go to my first tweet up and actually got to meet some of these great people face to face for the first time.  This was truly an amazing experience for me to see all of these people who I felt I already knew from reading and sharing stories together through twitter, blogs, Facebook and even LinkedIn.  I even had the privilege of meeting other people that I feel I will be connected with for life by our shared stories and challenges we have faced in life.

My big take away from this tweet up opportunity was the fact that all of these great people each had their own story to tell and I got the chance to talk and learn more about each of them.  The more we all talked the more I came to the realization that we all have so many challenges and hurdles to face in our life and just when you think that you are all alone you realize that there are so many great people out there that may have faced the same challenges as you.  They may be able to give you the advice or guidance you need to make it through that challenge in life and in turn you actually may be able to return the favor to them or even pay it forward to someone else down the road.  So no matter how tough you think it is out there and how alone you may feel when dealing with the stress of life, never be afraid to reach out.  There will always be a great person out there that will be more than happy to catch you when you are about to fall.

So to all of those great people that I was so honored to meet last night, thank you so much for sharing your stories with me.  I look forward to continuing our relationship and bond for a very long time, and to those out there that are looking for that person to catch you don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.  There is always going to be someone out there to listen and give you the guidance and advice you are searching for.

All the best!