When someone like Jonathan Toews speaks candidly about the NHL lockout like he did Monday afternoon, people listen, and hopefully the 30 NHL team owners were among that group.
Following an on-ice workout in Chicago yesterday, Toews didn’t hold anything back when confronted with the question about the lockout.
“We saw what the (owners) did in ’04-05, and who knows if they’re willing to do that again,” Toews said. “To me, it’s just carelessness. It’s them just trying to show everyone that they’re the owners and they’re the league. They can do whatever they want.”
The captain of the Blackhawks continued, saying the owners are hurting the game and don’t seem to care as long as they benefit.
“If they want to hurt their own game and drive it into the ground, that’s what they’ll do. Even if it comes down to that, it doesn’t matter as long as they get what they want.”
The comments from Toews in a sense were refreshing. While players have not shied away at times from saying what they feel in regards to their dispute with the owners, there haven’t been enough straight to the point, no B.S. soundbytes like the ones Toews delivered.
One of the game’s more prominent figures, Toews’ comments hit the nail on the head (from the players point of view, of course). He never came close to hiding how he felt and he didn’t teeter-totter around those feelings, and that is exactly what the players need to do more of.
Show the league that you mean business. Show them that you won’t be pushed around and won’t back down, but are ultimately committed to saving the season. Let fans know that there is absolutely zero doubt of your desires to play, but that it is being made extremely difficult. These are things that we the fans are for the most part schooled on, but do sometimes need to be reminded how much you love the game and how much you want to be playing it.
When a player with the accomplishments of Jonathan Toews speaks with such unbridled passion, it reminds us of which side we should be on. It reminds me us that we should not buy into the silly notion that says “these players achieve tremendous wealth playing a game most of us would play for free. How much more do they need?”
Is Jonathan Toews angry? “Why wouldn’t anybody be angry? It’s pretty frustrating how things have gone. I’m definitely not happy about it.”
Yeah he is, and you should be too.