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11-16-2012, 02:53 PM
Blind Gardien
nexus of the crisis
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Originally Posted by Capitano View Post
I have cheered for the habs when they had Rejean Houle making the decisions about the personnel on the ice...what's the difference?

I'm not losing any sleep without hockey, but I will be tuning in for sure the second that the habs will be on RDS 3-4 times a week. Players come and go all the time...

It's interesting to think about the different reasons that fans cheer though...
Definintely interesting. It somehow never really occurred to me that so many people would see things so completely differently from the way I do on that. I watch hockey at all levels, have since I was a kid. I have been exclusively loyal as a Habs fan in the NHL, while nomadically following a variety of teams at lower levels. I can sort of see the union-based solidarity argument against supporting a replacement player team, that's more a political/philosophical decision and I think I can understand that angle even if I don't personally find it all that meaningful at the income levels of NHL players.

But I never figured people wouldn't watch just because they thought it somehow wasn't "the best" hockey it could be. There are players in the ECHL today who are better than players I cheered for as Habs in decades past. I just don't see how the relative quality of the players matters or how it would be a "travesty" or anything like that. The connection to the "Habs logo" is just of paramount importance to me.

Bringing in replacement players would be somewhat distasteful just from it being a union-busting technique, but really, it's a union of millionaires who had ample opportunity to continue being millionaires, so it's a little hard to get behind them on principle like you would for the more run-of-the-mill blue-collar unions of yesteryear. Nobody is being oppressed or really being subjected to extremes of exploitation here. I mean, I'm pro-player on the basic bargaining issues in this CBA negotiation, and beyond left wing politically, but to me this isn't about real human rights issues or anything like that, the NHL is just a form of entertainment, a luxury item to modern society... I like watching hockey, and have formed a personal identification with the Montreal Canadiens... but I really don't care who the players on the ice are or how they stack up against some other group of players in the past, future, or outside the league.

If anything, as a rambling aside, in terms of labour issues and societal impacts... if a replacement player league was up and running and all the rest of the non-player employees and "normal people" with small scale stakes in the business were back on their myriad jobs, I'd say that was a more important issue than worrying about the names on the back of the players' jerseys. Nobody is representing the ticket checkers or floor sweepers or zamboni drivers or waiters or whoever in the labour dispute. Put the replacement players on the ice, I'm satisfied as a non-judgemental Habs devotee looking for hockey entertainment and certain I'd find it, and also *more* satisfied on behalf of the unrepresented 99%ers associated at whatever remove with the industry as well.

(All while still accepting that replacement players are probably even less of an option for our team than they might be for others, just on labour laws, so still treating it all as one big fat hypothetical fantasy, of course.)

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