Meandering Sens/Owner/Lockout post 
Rod Bryden was in the papers here in Ottawa today - he is no longer the CEO of WorldHeart.  He was the owner of the Sens until Eugene Melnyk (a Moldovan friend said is should be pronounced "uGEN" Melynk since it's a Moldovan name??) took over the team.

It got me thinking about the difference in the fan's attitudes now and then.  Bryden would every so often, come on the TV and Radio, and say how the team would leave if more fans didn't support the team.  I thought he was being slighly blunt about the issues but it made a lot of fans feel like pushing back as it felt like he was threatening them - buy tickets or else. 

Sure - it was a threat and a real threat as the bankruptcy proceedings could have ended a much different way than they did. 

But considering the success the team had attendance wise last year - even when not playing as well as the year before, you ask yourself why?  The local economy never improved - business owned season tickets in Ottawa still rank near the bottom - so why the increase in attendance?

A positive attitude coming from the organization is my guess.  Stability and optimism.  Fans love it.  Muckler talking about winning the cup, and Melnyk talking about beating the Leafs or whatever, brings passion to the team.  Sports, and being a sports fan, is about passion and a feeling like you are a part of the team - not about entertainment value, or the number of jobs the team brings to the city. 

It's this passion that will suffer if there is a prolonged lockout.  Fans don't need to be reminded daily from the day the lockout starts to when it ends, how much money these players make and how much each side is lying to the other, etc.  We want to hear if the latest draft pick will make the team, who is going to centre Hossa, and what the team will look like with the new coach.  We want to buy tickets to see Hasek in a Senators jersey, to see Spezza become a number one centre and to see Chara and Phillips punish opposing forwards. 

I'm a optimist as I still believe there will be no lockout.  I can't believe that the players and owners will ignore the truth behind their business - that it depends so much on more than CBA/salary numbers - it depends on the fans passion.

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