TORONTO – The Hockey Hall of Fame is not a church. It just feels like one – the stained-glass ceiling soaring in the Great Hall; the Stanley Cup sitting upon a pedestal, like a chalice upon an altar; the honored members immortalized on frosted-glass plaques, looking like ghosts.
It is tempting to call it "the sanctuary of our game," as NHL commissioner Gary Bettman did Monday night during the ceremony inducting Pavel Bure, Adam Oates, Joe Sakic and Mats Sundin.
"Even in difficult times," Bettman said, "we find ourselves reassured to be here to recognize ultimate achievements on the ice."
But do you know what the Hockey Hall of Fame really is? It is a converted bank. And do you know what the NHL really is? It is a business, and among the things it sells are nostalgia and sentimentalism. It capitalizes on the reverence of "our game."
The lockout taints even that.
Sorry to be so cynical, and sorry to write this on an occasion that should have belonged to the inductees and theRead More »from NHL lockout looms over 2012 Hockey Hall of Fame ceremony