Hockey Lessons For n00bz: NHL Lockout 2004-05

DC Sports Nexus ---- Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Lockouts suck. NFL & NBA fans know this. But did you know that NHL fans don't like lockouts either, and their lockout was worse (so far).

NFL Lockout 2011:

This year has been a crazy year for lockout news. First the NFL went into lockout mode and scared us into thinking that we might miss one or more of our precious football Sundays. (What would my boss think if I showed up to work on a Monday not hungover?)

The NFL lockout issue was resolved and now we have a great (if not a Skins fan) NFL season. The only thing missed was some preseason workouts which fans could care less about, and one preseason game that fans equally don't care about.

NBA Lockout 2011:

Then it was the NBA's turn. The NBA lockout came around and that one seemed a little more scary than the football version. When you have Baron Davis dressing like a nerdy lumberjack teaming up with a player who should have retired 5 years ago, you aren't going to make much progress.

The NBA lockout has yet to be resolved and probably will not be. However, so far only a few games have been officially cancelled. The NBA is in severe danger of becoming the 2nd major
North American pro-sports league to ever be cancelled. So what was the first?

Bandwagon & Apathy About Losing The NHL:

Where were you back in 2004? Were you rocking the red (metaphorically...see comments)? Were you watching the last place Washington Capitals end the season with a dud? For a select few of you, probably the people who read blogs, then you were watching the Caps lose and getting upset. However, for most current Caps fans, I doubt they even knew the team existed.

If you were one of those fans, then when the NHL cancelled their season back in 2004, you were probably like me and didn't care whatsoever. I remember my reaction was "Good Riddance" and hoping that the league would never return. I was really anti-hockey and the Wizards were the only team worth watching that season as Gilbert Arenas led them to the 2nd round of the playoffs.

NHL Players vs NBA Players:

You have probably read about NBA players either playing in Europe or thinking about playing in Europe during their lockout (& more to come in the near future). However most players are just playing street-ball games where they just f' around and use moves they will never use in a real NBA game.

The NHL players cared a little more about maintaining their skills during the lockout as almost 400 NHL players went to play in Europe (wiki). In these games there was no random dude skating on the ice with the microphone heckling players, no crowds on the ice, and no horsing around.


Unlike the NFL & NBA, the NHL actually cancelled an entire season. I remember that after the baseball strike cut the season short I stopped watching baseball for years. I can't imagine how upset I would be over an entirely cancelled season. Did people shift their time over to the NBA? I think so.

According to Business Insider, NHL attendance is actually down during the NBA lockout. I can understand this because I feel that most hockey fans watch basketball too, but most basketball fans don't watch hockey. This thinking also leads to my assumption that the NBA gained a little from the NHL lockout, but not vice versa (Fred Savage).

I am one of the few that has taken up the NHL to replace my NBA fix. Although I still want the NBA lockout to end, I am in the NHL to stay. Here's hoping I never have to write about an NHL lockout ever again.


CapsHokie said...

If you were "Rocking the Red" in 2004 you were likely not rooting for the Capitals. The new look wasn't unveiled until 2007 and the last time the Caps had worn red was 1995. Rocking the black, gold, white and, to a lesser extent by 2004, blue would be the best you could hope for.

As another note to a new Caps fan, and I don't want to overstep my bounds and speak for the whole fanbase here, but in 2004 Ted Leonsis was still a major lightning rod for the fanbase. Most of the team from the 1998 cup run had been dismantled and, with the run still fairly fresh in our collective minds, a lot of the lack of success was attributed to the moves it was assumed Ted was behind *cough*Jagr*cough* (even if reaching the SCF in '98 was generally seen as the fluke it was).

Unlike a certain DC sports owner though, Ted learned. The hockey decisions are mostly left to the hockey people and Ted deals mostly with the business side. Speaking only for myself: I hated Ted in the beginning but I love the work he's done now.

Chris Ford said...

LOL good point, I forgot they weren't red. So I guess "metaphorically" rocking the red.

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