It’s an experience shared by many in this small town near the Canadian border, and it’s one that’s been growing in intensity since the end of the lockout.
The fans have rallied together to try to get out of a lockout that’s left their teams with no revenue and no playoff berth.
But the frustration is growing.
“The lockout has affected us.
It’s not just the players.
It affects everybody,” said James, a 22-year-old University of Ottawa graduate.”
I just want to say that everyone here is in this lockout together.
We are all the same.
We’re all fighting for the same things.
We have to fight to get our team back.”
While the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement has been in place since the 1996-97 season, it wasn’t until the end for the current collective bargaining cycle that it started to get enforced.
But players, coaches and front office executives are hoping to take advantage of the new CBA that gives them more power in negotiating salaries and raises for their players.
“We’re very thankful to the league for this.
We hope it continues to be a great league and it can continue to help us make a positive impact in this community,” said Adam, a 25-year old University of British Columbia student.”
As long as there is a salary cap and the players are able to make that, then the league should be able to continue to grow and expand.”
With players’ salaries set to rise to $5.8 million next season, the pressure is on for the players to make a more substantial jump in salary.
“Players have got to get paid.
There’s no doubt in my mind, the players have got it,” said Michael, a 24-year veteran.”
At the end (of the season) there should be a little bit more of an increase for the teams and players.
But we’re not asking for anything.
It would just be nice to see a little more money.”