The NHL lockout is an ugly beast. We've seen it claim the NHL preseason and, barring a major surprise, we'll see it claiming regular season games in the very near future. Fans are outraged and understandably so as the league enjoys its second lockout in nine years.
So what can hockey fans do about it? Unfortunately, not much but that hasn't stopped various groups from coming up with some inventive ideas on how to show Gary Bettman and the NHL their disgust.
Photo courtesy of the LA Times
We'll start with the obvious – social media and traditional methods. You can send emails to Bettman himself at his address – firstname.lastname@example.org – and pester the poor soul that's in charge of sifting through it. We imagine Bettman's secretary (or email lackey) should be enjoying plenty of job security during the lockout.
Want to call the league office? Go for it. (212)789-2000. Hey, it only took 70,000 voicemails for the NFL to bring back their officials.
Mailing letters more your speed?
National Hockey League
1185 Avenue of the Americas, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10036
Protest in Person
Send Hats to Bettman
Time for the creative ideas.
Numerous users on Twitter have suggested that fans send hats to Bettman to congratulate him on his third lockout of his tenure. It's a pretty brilliant idea but it should be specified that these hats should NOT be NHL merchandise. No need to give Bettman more money through a protest.
Instead, send baseball hats, trucker hats or any hat you can find. Buy cheap hats at an outlet mall and write the name of your favorite NHL team on them. Send a message through bulk, cheap hats.
Send Animal Poop to Bettman
PDL does not condone sending animal feces to Gary Bettman.
That being said, Reddit created the idea of sending gorilla poop to Gary Bettman's office. At $23.95 for a gallon, plus $9.95 for shipping, it's no wonder that the idea took off and has numerous users eagerly trying to send poop to Bettman. Yes, the site is very real. Check it out for yourself if you don't believe us.
One can only imagine what the scene would be if there was a delivery of 100+ gallons of gorilla poop at NHL HQ. Perhaps a better strategy would be to space things out, leaving Bettman (or his poor secretary, again) unaware of when the next bucket would be delivered. Hopefully someone out there could take a video for us.
Send Ramen Noodles to NHL Offices
Hockee Night on Twitter pointed out the idea of sending Ramen noodles and SpaghettiOs to NHL offices around the league. The thought behind this one is that times are obviously tough for the billionaires and millionaires out there so we might as well pitch in and help out.
We don't want any NHL owners going hungry!
Fans expressing themselves through song has probably been the most prominent form of protest we have seen during the lockout – for better or worse. Clearly, the talent here varies quite a bit.
Puck Daddy of Yahoo! Sports gave us "Lockout Man" by Harrison Mooney.
Possibly my favorite, Exanimeau with his rendition of "No More Merch". Extremely well done.
Elizabeth Schroyer made a YouTube video set to a Taylor Swift song that might sum up what a lot of hockey fans are currently feelings.