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Mike Maniscalco

Apathy replacing anger for NHL fans

Posted November 29, 2012
Updated November 30, 2012

It is time to stop pointing fingers. It is time to put aside petty differences. It is time for the NHL to end the lockout.

We are past the point of which side is wrong, because both sides are mile past that line. This isn’t about placing blame anymore for the NHL and NHLPA. The newest concern for players and owners is how many people care if the game comes back?

There is no deal that can be done right now that will repair the damage that the two sides have inflicted on the game and to its fans. There is a growing amount of apathy that has set in with the fans of the game.

In a place like the Triangle, out of sight, out of mind is deadly to the Carolina Hurricanes organization. The concern should mount even more when the expectations of the college basketball team in the same arena are sky high. Season tickets for ACC basketball at the PNC Arena seem to be a safer entertainment bet, and fans don’t have to worry about the NCAA locking players out.

Leading into the lockout, I was asked on a daily basis when the NHL would drop the puck. Over the last two weeks, nary a question. Curiosity led me to ask the fans if they are still upset that there is no hockey or have they moved on?

The majority of the responses were that fans are upset with the NHL traveling down this path again, but they won’t turn their back on the game. That also doesn’t mean that they are willing to return if the league can fasten a season together this year.

These were a few of the comments sent to me via twitter:

”At this point basketball has my full attn. If hockey starts back this season probably won't watch unless Canes in playoffs.” -Jonathan

”Found other things to do and watch. Tell them to take their time” -Mike

”I'm upset. B/c I love the game& miss it & for the sake of arena workers, media, staff, etc, I'll watch when the puck drops.” -Emily

“Haven't given up, but the relationship is damaged. #NHL” -Carolyn

“Don't care anymore. Even if they come to an agreement we get some partial season and it gets old.” -Cody

“I'm over the #NHL for the season. They should just cancel the season. I can't get excited for it anymore this year.” -Kristy

“Will never give up on the sport or the Canes, just at the point of tell me (when) the idiots stop acting like children.” -Joe

This is not a full sample of every fan base of the league. Places like Toronto and Montreal will have the patrons flocking back the second there is a season. Hardcore fans always go back, no matter how awful the sport is run. This lockout isn’t concerned about those places losing season ticket holders or corporate money. The fact that is troublesome is that NHL management thinks that will happen everywhere.

To believe that places like Carolina, where there are not millions upon millions of sponsorship dollars and people to draw off of, will be better after a second missed season in eight years, is asinine. Failure to see teams like the Hurricanes will be hurt by another stoppage is mind-boggling and economically irresponsible. There is the old adage, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” Some Hurricanes fans are tired of the NHL's shame and are taking the lesson screamed by The Who – they won't get fooled again.

Mediators have been called in to settle this to no avail. Deputy commissioner Billy Daly said that the sides are still far apart, but with each passing day that is not the chasm that bothers me. The gap between the game and the fans that is growing wider, that is the cause of concern . The NHL should have learned, dealing with upset fans for a delayed start to the season  is easier than winning back apathetic fans that have found better things to do with their time and money.

64 Comments

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  • theradiator25 Dec 4, 5:56 p.m.

    I haven't been to a 'Canes game in 11 years. The tickets were already too expensive even then, and haven't even thought of buying any since. As far as other sports go, I still watch college basketball, but that's pretty much it. With all of the money grubbing going on, I find fewer and fewer reasons to care what goes on in the sports world. It used to be a nice escape for a few hours to enjoy the exploits of your favorite team(s). Now it's just a joke.

  • C6-YA Dec 1, 2:08 p.m.

    Here is another STH that gave up and bought Wolfpack bball tickets. The players are the ones to... View More

    — Posted by raleigh-cary

    Closely followed by the people who work @ the PNC Arena.

  • wlcat609 Dec 1, 8:31 a.m.

    Personally, I've been enjoying watching the College hockey on TV....guys play hard and show up for every game.....and I haven't missed hearing/muting Tripp Tracy!

  • raleigh-cary Nov 30, 9:12 p.m.

    Here is another STH that gave up and bought Wolfpack bball tickets. The players are the ones to blame. None of them understand basic finance. The players want their money off the top. They do not want to share in the expenses. In other words, they want the owners to take all the risk. That is nuts. I hope the owners call off the season and the players hit the back of the unemployment line.

  • Hammerhead Nov 30, 7:34 p.m.

    There's always Cupcake Wars on the Food Network. Very compelling.

    — Posted by Hammerhead

    For a minute I thought you were talking about the teams some schools schedule for their... View More

    — Posted by GunnyGoesBaaaarf

    No prob, woman.

  • GunnyGoesBaaaarf Nov 30, 6:21 p.m.

    I wonder if this is an attempt to weed out teams in bad markets without actually having to bring... View More

    — Posted by OGE

    Love your avatar!

  • GunnyGoesBaaaarf Nov 30, 6:20 p.m.

    Who cares..??? The NHL is like the NBA...old men playing younger mens games...both seasons last... View More

    — Posted by SmokeWagon

    You should look at this before you speak. http://www.quanthockey.com/TS/TS_AverageAge.phpView More

    — Posted by edits

    Sing it, sister! Calling anyone around 30 "old", well, then call me ancient:)

  • cmmsbft Nov 30, 5:42 p.m.

    Can the workers at all the arenas start a class action suit against players and owners for the... View More

    — Posted by Momsy

    ...You should start up the union

  • cmmsbft Nov 30, 5:39 p.m.

    [quote=11828863]Post by sanacito[/quote...How much for the tickets?

  • Banned by Sissies Nov 30, 5:37 p.m.

    Yet another example of Unions tearing this country apart.

    — Posted by twoods7

    EXACTLY!

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Local
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
1:00pm Today
UNC
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4:00pm Today
MVSU
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7:00pm Tonight
UNCW
ECU
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NYR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
UTA
 
9:30pm Tonight
WVU
NCSU
 
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
Final
ORL 94
UTA 101
Final
CLE 95
BRK 91
Final
BOS 114
MIN 98
Final
DET 100
TOR 110
Final
MIA 103
WAS 105
Final
MEM 97
CHI 103
Final
SAN 119
POR 129
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DEN 109
LAC 106
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LAL 103
OKC 104
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NYK
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
NOP
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
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8:30pm Tonight
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11:00am Today
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2:20pm Today
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UTST
3:30pm Today
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UTAH
5:45pm Tonight
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WMICH
9:15pm Tonight
BGU
SALABAMA
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YOUNG 92
WILB 71
 
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TULA 56
JST 49
 
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RAD 76
SIENA 66
 
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BUCK 88
CASEWEST 65
 
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SCAR 68
CLEM 45
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CMICH 97
CONC 60
 
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MIAMI 44
EKENT 72
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GWEBB 91
HIWASSEE 71
 
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ODU 60
MDES 43
 
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NIAG 62
 
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NCAT 57
 
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UNF 83
 
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MORE 60
NKENTUCKY 83
 
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SDCHR 46
 
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GAELS 47
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STILL 49
 
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TENST 54
 
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TENN 61
TENT 58
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COOK 46
 
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FUR 78
 
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SDKST 53
 
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CHAT 58
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LSUALEX 71
 
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PRIN 77
LIP 55
 
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SEAT 57
 
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SUTAH 57
 
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WINT 71
 
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NO 56
 
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ALAAM 49
 
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ARKPB 51
 
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DEN 84
COLST 85
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CREI 75
TXPA 60
 
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CAL 78
EWASH 67
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UTST 69
IDST 56
 
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UTEP 55
ARZ 60
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CHAM 63
HAW 94
 
12:00pm Today
GEOR
CHAR
 
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LOU
 
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SMU
 
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OU
 
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MSST
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OTT
 
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TAM
 
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