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Friday, July 15, 2005

Habemus Hockeiam!

As Bryan notes, we have a CBA.

But.

I have seen the future, and it stinks. The Wings will be fine--the management is smart enough to adjust, and the scouting system is one of the best. Still, I resent the hard cap--it rewards the "stop me before I spend again" owners without sufficient neurons to control themselves, and punishes teams with the resources to do more.

And I will not weep for the small market hardliners when they are forced to sell or flat-out contract.

That's because the agreement can do nothing to address this fact:

Hockey is not the fourth major sport--NASCAR is.

Hockey is a sport with regional appeal. That's it. Texas Hold 'Em tournaments have drawn better ratings on ESPN. That doesn't mean hockey is not a great sport--it is. There is nothing like the drama of overtime playoff hockey--nothing. But it will always--barring the arrival of a hockey equivalent of Michael Jordan--be a sport with structural limitations to its appeal. The great levelling of this CBA won't change that.

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