The NHL is still on strike as of 12/12/12 and there doesn’t appear to be any end in sight. Perhaps the strike will go another month or so before cooler heads will prevail and an agreement will be reached so grown men in major U.S. and Canadian cities can fly around the ice on sharp steel and chase each other with long, wooden sticks.
If an agreement is made, the NHL will begin play early next year. That means, their season would be condensed and may include 40 to 50 hockey games at the professional level in the States and in the country north of the border with a large, maple leaf on their national flag.
Last year, there was a labor dispute in the NBA and some thought this could go on all season long. Both sides decided to work together and December of ’11 they finally came to an agreement and settled the strike. The 2011-12 NBA season commenced on Christmas. Imagine that, NBA having a 66 game season or even less, beginning on Christmas day?
What’s my point? Well, last year, pro hockey lovers had the opportunity to see an entire season while professional basketball viewers saw an amended schedule. This year, the roles are reversed and NBA lovers will see an entire season and NHL hockey fans are hoping there will be professional “cold steel on ice” once January ’13 rolls around. For those who opt for a 40% shorter basketball and hockey season, me included, let’s lobby for 2-year agreements between the players and owners of both sports where the agreements would be in alternating years.
That way, because there’s a lot of mistrust between the players and owners and they may not be able to agree on a new contract, one of these major sports may have to cancel part of their season and play a shortened schedule. A roundabout way of getting the season reduced by 30 to 50 games. I know it’s a cynical approach and is highly unlikely to happen but you could make the argument that for the past two years, we’ve seen a shortened basketball season and most likely, a much shortened hockey season due to labor disputes.
Again, for those who think there’s too many games, we got the results we were looking for these last two years although the means by which this was accomplished was not necessarily anticipated.
A crazy and cynical approach to shorten the hockey and basketball season that contains 80 and 82 games respectivelyand highly unlikely to occur but for those who want to see less of professional sports on TV, you never know.