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Larry Robinson worries about damage caused by lockout

Nov 5, 2012, 9:42 PM EDT

Larry Robinson, Martin Brodeur Getty Images

The San Jose Sharks didn’t significantly shake up their roster following their fast exit from the 2012 NHL playoffs, but they did add Hall of Fame defenseman Larry Robinson to serve as an associate coach.

Robinson comes with a history of playoff success that might rub off on the San Jose Sharks’ players. The only problem is that, until this lockout ends, he can’t do his job.

“For me, it’s very frustrating because I’m just starting with a new organization and I was happy and excited to start a new job, and all of a sudden there’s no job to go to, and it’s frustrating for me,” Robinson said in a Grantland.com report.

He does recognize that the lockout is giving him an opportunity to spend more time watching the prospects within the Sharks’ organization, so on a personal level, this lockout hasn’t been completely bad.

“But I also enjoy the integrity of the game,” Robinson said, “and what I don’t want to see happen with all this that’s going on, there’s a lot of people who rely on our business for their jobs, and we’ve got a sport that’s worked so hard to gain popularity. You look at L.A., and they finally, after all these years, get a chance to win a Cup and enjoy the fruits of all their hard labor, and there’s nothing there for them.”

If there’s a silver lining, it’s that the CBA talks seem to be heating up again and the 2012-13 campaign might still be salvaged. Of course, until the NHL and NHLPA actually agree on a new CBA, nothing is certain.

  1. websurferdude - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    He has every right to worry, this lock out will cause major damage from the fans point of view. Three locks in 15 years I don’t see how any sport can survive. From a fans perspective I’m sick and tired of all the BS and greed in this league I hope it does die and never comes back.

    • blomfeld - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:32 PM

      Good-bye then friend and God speed to you …

  2. manchestermiracle - Nov 6, 2012 at 12:37 AM

    I guess I must be one of those idiots blomfeld refers to when defending his conspiracy theory and the league intentionally losing the first half of the schedule in order to help struggling franchises. The hit to the league’s image alone makes that scenario pretty dubious.

    It seems to me that the success of a team like the Kings would grow the sport in areas in which it’s trying to establish a greater foothold. Is it just bad timing for the plotting conspirators of the league to have a team in a warm-weather location win the Cup and then not get to build on that success?

    Robinson’s right on the simple point that this lockout can only hurt the league’s chances of growing its product and increasing its revenue. No matter your opinion of what the hardcore NHL fan likes to call band-wagoners, without them the league doesn’t get to the level of over $3 billion a year in revenue. Blomfeld and Joey would like to see certain fans disappear, but that’s just cutting your own throat.

    Without a varied, wide-spread fanbase, networks have no incentive to put the NHL on live and we go back to the days of obscure channels and delayed broadcasts. There simply aren’t enough dyed-in-the-wool hockey fans to support national TV contracts and prime-time telecasts.

    Unlike blomfeld I have no answer as to if/when the NHL starts playing again, but I can definitely see a big step back in the league’s growth and its attempt to become a relevant player in the sports market, at least in the U.S. Lots of fans, casual and otherwise, have been turned off by this debacle and the league will be lucky to ever see some of them again. Say what you want about their “loyalty,” or lack thereof, but the NHL won’t be the same for a long time. And if you liked where it was going, sunbelt expansion or not, then that can’t be a good thing.

    • id4joey - Nov 6, 2012 at 6:26 AM

      Manchestermiracle, well written my friend. Note that I agree with Mr. Robinson and your assessment of the current situation. Through experience your learn many lessons. Here are a few;

      1) don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. If you truly love the game, then you stick by it. Why? The collective bargaining process is not about the game that happens on the ice. One has to be able to separate the business aspect from the on ice game. It is being driven, as other sports, by businessmen who wish to increase their profits. We are the victims, small at that because the real victims are those who have lost their josb. We after all live in a capitalist system. 

      2) discipline over emotion. Helps make you understand conflicts more clearly and take rationale decisions. Understanding the mechanics of the business side of this conflict is essential. There are two parties negotiating who are either very well qualified, or are very well supported by consultants who specialize in labor negotiations. 

      3) accept what you can’t control. It’s ok to be disappointed that the season has not started, and may not happen (I doubt it), but, we are on the sidelines here. There are other issues in life that are more important than hockey that we can influence. Let the ownership and PA settle their differences. 

      4) patience and hope. Good things come to those who wait. The season has not been cancelled yet, so before jumping ship lets make sure it is sinking beyond repair. We should maintain hope that at the very least the season is salvaged with less than 82 games. As a bonus we can hope for the WC to be reinstated if a deal is made soon. i.e. in 2 or three days.

      So if you come here to cuss and spit on the game that you because of the impasse, and want to stop supporting the game, then these supposedly fans become the casualties of the impasse (nothing compared to those who lost their jobs). If they want to go, then by all means do so. When the league starts up again there will be plenty of opportunities for the league to grow its fan base, and they’ll take every opportunity to do so. 

  3. blomfeld - Nov 6, 2012 at 2:27 AM

    Lieutenant: beg to report sir, Colonel Joey’s artillery are now all up forward and in position !

    Blomfeld: thank you Lieutenant, however kindly inform Colonel Joey to stand his people down …

    Lieutenant: but why sir ? … we’ve got ‘em square in our cross hairs ?

    Blomfeld: these Manchester people are not our enemies Lieutenant ! … so if you please ?

    Lieutenant: very well sir …

    ________________________________________________________________

    Manchester – What you say is true enough, despite your omittance of the fact that I’m on the record here for calling Bettman’s little Von Schlieffen Plan to end during the week of Nov 5 -10. Look, I actually wish the best for all “sunbelt” teams and their fans. That’s after all how we Kings started out back in ’67. What I do reject however, are these supposed “life long” new-age “Keeping Up With The Kardashian” hockey fans who are apparently going to now throw in the towel on the game ? That’s completely unacceptable as far as I’m concerned ! And you should bloody well know that too, being an LA Kings fan yourself ! As you know, we Kings don’t ever buckle under pressure ! … if anything, we close rank and then press home the attack with even greater zeal ! That’s our credo friend and that’s why we’re the best !

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