Published 12:00 am Monday, February 28, 2005


too late

Ok Sports fans, it's time to all bow our heads

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and share a collective moment of silence. The reasoning behind this is simple. For the first time in the history of professional sports, a season has been cancelled.

The cancellation stems from one core issue for both parties involved.


The green-eyed monster has reared it's ugly head at one point or another in every professional sport – from Major League Baseball to the Professional Rook Association of America.

But all of these sports were able to escape the creature's grasp and salvage some form of a season.

For many people, the thought of canceling a professional sports season meant turning off the Playstation 2 or the X-Box. But, earlier this week, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman announced that neither the players nor the owners were able to come to a conclusion on labor and money issues and as a result the 2005 NHL season was cancelled.

You know sports fans this makes it official.

Professional athletes don't play for the love of the game anymore. Instead their focus has shifted and they play for the paycheck after the game.

Now, this writer understands that this is a job for these guys. But, there is no reason their salaries should be as high as they are.

Hockey fans now are left twiddling their thumbs trying to figure out what to do in the puckless months.

Don't feel sorry for the player or for the owners. The people who should receive the sorry are the fans. Think about the fans in Detroit. That's all they had to look forward to – the Red Wings, a seat in Joe Louis Arena and a nice slimy octopus. But now,

that there is no season, what are the fans going to do cheer for Detroit Tigers' baseball or say that next year will be the Lions year in the NFL.

If professional athletes were really about the sport then they would take things like the fans into consideration when they make a decision like this. But, the owners had a way to salvage the season and it would have cost them less money to field a team than it would to pay one of their tagged, or franchised players.

All the owners had to do was raid the smaller leagues, the IHL, UHL and Europe.

Fill up a team with replacement players for half the salaries of what some of the pro's are making and play the season. That would get the point across to some of the players that they are not as unexpendable as they think they are.

Look what it did for the Major League Baseball strike in 1994.

But now, it's too little, too late for the NHL.

Despite rumors circulating that the owners and the players are meeting again to play the remainder of the season.

Face it guys.

Your greed and need for excessive amounts of money have done something that has never happened. On Lord Stanley's Cup their will be a blank plaquette where the 2005 NHL champion should be. In the champions place will be one word in all capital letters – CANCELLED.

It's that simple.

Griffin Pritchard is the Sports Editor of the Greenville Advocate. He can be reached by email at or by phone: 382-3111 ext. 122