Ranking Offseason Storylines That NHL Fans Are Tired of

Eric Steitz@esteitz16Analyst IIISeptember 6, 2012

Ranking Offseason Storylines That NHL Fans Are Tired of

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    The offseason is an exciting time for fans. With the NHL Entry Draft, free agency and trades, the offseason allows for some edge of your seat action without any on-ice action.

    But that excitement turns to boredom after two months.

    The offseason moves lead to speculation. Constant speculation turns into monotony.

    Eventually fans just want the season to start so they can stop listening to speculation and start watching the fruits of the offseason's labor come to fruition.

    How about that collective bargaining agreement? The best update so far: "Talks went shorter than expected."

    As a fan, information is precious. Who is on the move? What's happening? What's the big news?

    But the 2012 offseason has turned into an information overload dominated by a few select topics―topics that have fans bored out of their minds.

    Hockey fans are hoping there is no lockout, not only so their favorite teams and players can get back on the ice, but also so they don't have to hear about these over-analyzed topics.

7. Zach Parise, Ryan Suter and the Minnesota Wild

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    The Minnesota Wild may have changed the hierarchy in the Western Conference with its signings of the top two free agents on the market.

    Long-term deals for Zach Parise and Ryan Suter have brought a great amount of speculation to the Wild's chances.

    Everything from the Wild missing the playoffs to them winning the Stanley Cup has been covered—until we are blue in the face.

    Fans at this point could care less how much money they signed for or how the contracts are ruining the game, just get on the ice and let the season play out however it will.

6. Alexander Semin

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    Everyone in the NHL knows Alexander Semin is a streaky player. The Hurricanes accepted that when they signed him.

    The initial speculation of who would take the gamble on him turned into an analysis of the Hurricanes' entire offseason lumped into this one risky deal.

    The 'Canes protected themselves by making it a one-year deal. If they get return on it, great investment. If not, they go separate ways after the season.

    Let the season start so the Hurricanes—and the fans—can see which Semin they signed and end the speculation.

5. Crosby's Health

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    Finish the sentence: "If Sidney Crosby is healthy..."

    Hockey fans have had this story force-fed to them for the last few years.

    Crosby can't stay healthy. Crosby is the best player in the game, when healthy. Crosby's extension is ridiculous with his health issues.

    There's only one way to see if he can stay healthy: get on the ice and let him play. Until then, let's put the brakes on his health debate.

4. Roberto Luongo

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    The trade winds have been swirling around Roberto Luongo this offseason since the Vancouver Canucks signed Cory Schneider to a multi-year deal.

    Where will he go? Will he stay in Vancouver? Chicago? Florida? Toronto? Tampa Bay?

    He's a great goaltender, though he is better in the regular season than the postseason.

    Hockey fans know he prefers to go back to Florida. That was reported months ago.

    The most recent update from Sept. 4 is that Luongo still wants to go to Florida, but would be open to other opportunities. Did we really need that update?

    This story has run its course. Keep it quiet until he goes somewhere.

3. Phoenix Coyotes Ownership

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    With the uncertainty surrounding the NHL and its business investments, the Phoenix Coyotes ownership situation has dominated headlines.

    Are the Coyotes staying in Glendale? Who owns the team? Are they relocating? Where? Seattle? Quebec City? Toronto?

    Let's not even consider the effect this has all had on free agent Shane Doan.

    A team that finally earned some respectability last season has been given a significant amount of offseason attention.

    This would be a completely different story if it were about the Pittsburgh Penguins or New York Rangers, but it's not―it's Phoenix.

    Time to move on.

2. The CBA

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    The current collective bargaining agreement expires on September 15th and the NHL owners have said they won't play this season under the old terms.

    That means constant updates of the CBA negotiations to the point that it's exhausting.

    Talks went shorter than expected.

    That's a life-changing update. A new CBA is important to everyone, especially fans who want to see how their team will do with the new signings and trades.

    No one wants a lockout. But, at this point, fans have probably adopted the "wake me up when we have something final" mentality.

    In case you're not caught up on the most recent reports, the players feel there will be a lockout. Martin St. Louis even approves of it for the players.

    The owners wants full control of realignment, scheduling and the playoff format.

    Wake us up when we have, or don't have, hockey to watch.

1. Shane Doan

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    One player has dominated headlines more than anyone else this season.

    Sidney Crosby has been dethroned as the media poster boy. It's not Alex Ovechkin or Steven Stamkos either. Heck, it's not even Zach Parise, Ryan Suter or Shea Weber.

    It's Shane Doan.

    Doan is a talented player and deserves some of this attention but he has overstayed his welcome on the front page.

    The longtime Coyotes captain set deadlines for his contract earlier in the offseason. He didn't stick to those.

    Doan even set the terms of his deal, if he were to leave Phoenix. He got a few offers that aligned―still no contract.

    What captivated most NHL fans as an exciting story in July and early August has turned to boredom.

    At this point, only the team that signs him will have an excited fanbase.

    But by then, no one will be disappointed anymore. They will only be happy that this saga is over.