NHL Lockout: 5 Teams That Will Suffer the Most Due to the League's Work Stoppage

Ben Lippel@thewritebenContributor IIISeptember 16, 2012

NHL Lockout: 5 Teams That Will Suffer the Most Due to the League's Work Stoppage

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    In the song "After Midnight," legendary British guitarist Eric Clapton wasn't referring to the moments immediately after the latest NHL lockout reared its ugly head at 12:01 Sunday morning.

    After midnight, we're gonna let it all hang down. After midnight, we're gonna chug-a-lug and shout. We're gonna stimulate some action; We're gonna get some satisfaction. We're gonna find out what it is all about. After midnight, we're gonna let it all hang down.

    Unfortunately, the only things hanging down after midnight were the faces of those who are affected by the league's latest work stoppage:

    • The owners, without their meal tickets in place to help generate revenue.
    • The players, locked out of the game they love by the people who agreed to pay their escalating salaries in the first place.
    • The fans, the biggest losers of all, without their favorite teams to cheer for.

    Sad but true, the NHL has been iced for the third under the Gary Bettman administration.

    Your hat trick is complete, Commish.

    Of course, both sides lamented the lockout. According to Kevin Allen at USAToday.com, here's what NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said on behalf of the owners:

    "We spoke today and determined that there was no point in convening a formal bargaining session in light of the fact that neither side is in a position to move off of its last proposal," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said Saturday afternoon. "I'm sure we will keep in touch in the coming days and schedule meetings to the extent they might be useful or appropriate.

    We are sorry for where we are. Not what we hoped or expected."

    Then Steve Fehr, brother of NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr, put his two cents in, as he represented the rank and file:

    "Today we suggested that the parties meet in advance of the owners’ self-imposed deadline. Don Fehr, myself and several players on the negotiating committee were in the city and prepared to meet. The NHL said that it saw no purpose in having a formal meeting."

    Good times.

    As a result of the standoff, each of the 30 NHL teams will in some ways be negatively affected.

    But there are five teams in particular that will suffer most of all.

    Read on to get the details. 

It Could Be Curtains on Broadway

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    The photo above shows the last goal the New York Rangers gave up. 

    It was the overtime and series-ending crusher by Adam Henrique in Game 6 vs. the New Jersey Devils in last season's Eastern Conference Finals.

    And it could be the last goal they give up for awhile.

    The Rangers finished only six wins away from hoisting hockey's Holy Grail last season. Then, they added Rick Nash to their arsenal, to go along with players such as Brad Richards, Marian Gaborik, Ryan Callahan, Chris Kreider, Ryan McDonagh and Henrik Lundqvist.

    In a recent Sporting News article, Rangers head coach John Tortorella commented that his team is "'chomping on the bit' to start camp."

    Well, looks like they're going to have to keep on chomping.

    The Rangers are a team that's poised to take the next steps towards winning a championship. An extended work stoppage would keep them from fine tuning the unique chemistry and rock-solid identity they've forged over the last couple of seasons.

    Up Next: This team could face a predicament between the pipes

It Could Be a Devil of a Time for Two Net Assets

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    The New Jersey Devils finished just two victories shy of the Stanley Cup last season.

    It was a wonderful, springtime run.

    But then they lost their captain, Zach Parise, to free agency.

    Now that the lockout is on, they could net out in even worse shape.  

    Martin Brodeur is 40.

    Johan Hedberg is 39.

    Together, they form the oldest goal-tending tandem in the league.

    If the lockout lasts long into the winter months and beyond, the Devils' goal-tending grey beards will have a lot more rust on them.

    And corrosion between the pipes could put this franchise in a precarious situation for seasons to come.

    Up Next: This team could be saying, "Oh, brother" twice

It Could Be Double Trouble in Vancouver

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    The Vancouver Canucks are perennial Stanley Cup contenders.

    But a work stoppage could put a stop to that.

    Daniel and Henrik Sedin are 31 and have played a combined 195 playoff games.

    The twins have come close before, as they guided the Canucks to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2011, when they lost to the Boston Bruins in seven games.

    Right now, the balance of power has shifted away from Vancouver in the Western Conference, as the Kings are the reigning champs.

    The lockout could move the Sedins and the rest of their teammates further away from glory.

    Up Next: Why the stars may not align for this team

It Could Mean These Stars Won't Get the Chance to Shine

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    Some things actually do get better with age.

    But if the NHL lockout lasts for a prolonged period of time, the Dallas Stars may not be one of them.

    Free agent acquisitions Jaromir Jagr and Ray Whitney are both 40.

    Radek Dvorak is 35.

    Brenden Morrow is 33.

    Michael Ryder is 32.

    The clock is already ticking for these aging players.

    A prolonged work stoppage would not help these Stars shine any brighter.

    Up Next: It could be less howl and more scowl for this team

It Could Dry Up Hockey in the Desert

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    The Phoenix Coyotes had a season to remember in 2012.

    They made it all the way to the Western Conference Finals, only to lose to the eventual Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings.

    New ownership is finally in place, as reported by Greg Jamison of SI.com.

    Shane Doan, the heart and soul of the franchise, signed a 4-year extension, according to the Chicago Tribune.

    Things were looking to bloom in the desert.

    But now, the players and the fans are locked out.

    Shutting down the game in this non-traditional hockey market after it has gained such momentum could keep new fans away on a permanent basis.

    Up Next: The Bonus Slide—a stroll down memory lane

The Bonus Slide: Bettman Lockouts Part One and Two

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    Since the third lockout of the Gary Bettman administration is unfortunately under way, this is an opportune time to take a stroll down memory lane. 

    Part One: An article on the top 10 work stoppages in sports has the 1994 NHL lockout as number 9 on the list. Read about it here.

    Part Two: The video above by ESPN eulogizes the 2004-2005 season that never was.

    Plus, Don Fehr said the owners didn't have to institute the latest lockout. Details are here.

    And, here's an article from the Houston Chronicle about work stoppages in professional sports.