NHL Lockout 2020? How the last lockout hurt the Rangers
As some of you may have heard, the NHL has opted to not terminate the current CBA, and the ball is now in the NHLPA’s court to do the same.
What does this mean?
What does this mean to an impending lockout? Not very much, but at least we are halfway home to avoiding one. The NHLPA will need to make a decision by September 15th, but may look to extend that to January. If the NHLPA also decides to not terminate the agreement, then they will play the full 10 years of the CBA struck back in 2012-2013. That would set up a long negotiation battle to avoid a lockout of the 2022-2023 season.
The 2004-2005 Lockout for the Rangers
The NHL lost an entire season in 2004-2005. When hockey resumed in September of 2005, the Rangers would embark on a great run and break their seven years of playoff futility on the back of Jaromir Jagr. While some may view that lockout as a blessing, Rangers fans were robbed of a full season of Jagr’s brilliance.
The charismatic Czech was acquired late in the 2003 season and scored 15 goals and 29 points in 31 games. Not a bad first impression for the 31 year old forward to the Garden Faithful. However, what he did after the lockout was something no Rangers fan had ever seen. He put on an offensive campaign for the ages breaking Adam Graves’ most goals in a season (52) record with 54. If that wasn’t enough, he topped Jean Ratelle’s most points in a season (109) with 123 total points, all at the age of 33.
Jagr almost completed a feat no Ranger has ever pulled off; winning the Art Ross Trophy for NHL scoring champion. That season Joe Thornton scored 125 points to win the award. Oh what could’ve been for the Rangers records book if maybe Jagr played the year before at the age of 32.
How A Lockout in 2020 Would Really Hurt the Rangers
Kaapo Kakko, Vitali Kravtsov, Filip Chytil, Bret Howden, Adam Fox, Libor Hajek, and Igor Shesterkin. Should a lockout happen next year, all those players would lose a valuable year of development and chemistry.
Of all the team’s in the NHL, a lockout in 2020 would hurt the Rangers the most. Since the letter and the revved up rebuild, the franchise has gained enormous forward momentum. They’ve already been ranked by many as having the top prospect pool in the league, a lockout would derail a lot of those gains.
So here’s to the NHLPA opting to play out the full 10 years of the CBA and keep the games going. For the good of the fans, the league, and most of all the Rangers.