SUN Hockey Pool

NHL needs time in penalty box

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 12:03 PM ET

The NHL would have got exactly what it deserves had Sidney Crosby decided to sign a more lucrative offer to play pro hockey in Switzerland next season.

Crosby said yesterday he isn't going to Europe if the NHL mess is cleaned up, but if he did bolt, the NHL would have found out how it feels to be treated like dirt.

And that's exactly how the NHL deserves to be treated for a while, until it serves its sentence for taking hockey away from us for a year.

Yes, hockey is only fun and games when you get right down to it, but it's still a business. And the business side took away our fun and games during a long, cold winter.

Therefore, they should pay a penalty.

You know the folks in Toronto and Detroit are going to be filling ACC and Joe Louis Arena, respectively, right off the hop, but it's not going to be the same scenario in places like Florida and North Carolina, where the lockout effects will probably hit the hardest.

I'm interested to know how -- or if -- you're going to punish the NHL for pulling the stunt it pulled last winter. The only real measure to take in Winnipeg is to not watch hockey on TV and to stop buying merchandise.

Then again, once the lockout ends and the players officially get their butts handed to them on a platter, the talk of the NHL returning to Winnipeg is going to explode.

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