Matt Cullen talks about the NHL lockoutFargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Today is day 88 of the NHL lockout, where still no movement has been made between the owners and the players. Today I asked the area's most popular player, Minnesota Wild forward Matt Cullen about his frustration level waiting to get on the ice.
By: Dom Izzo, WDAY
Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Today is day 88 of the NHL lockout, where still no movement has been made between the owners and the players. Today I asked the area's most popular player, Minnesota Wild forward Matt Cullen about his frustration level waiting to get on the ice.
Matt Cullen: "There is really no reason that we shouldn't have, we are in the middle of negotiations and the owners walked out and here we are. For the players, whose this is our living and all we want to do is play hockey it's extremely frustrating. It's kind of mind boggling, we are all kind of at a loss for words as to why we are here and not playing right now. When you look at the deals, they seam so close that it seams absolutely ludicrous that we are not play."
What do you think is the biggest issues with the owners in your mind?
Cullen: "That's a good question and we kind of wonder the same exact thing, when you look at the things that are keeping us apart right now, realistically the major issue keeping it apart right now is the length of player contracts. It seams like such a trivial issue, at least to walk away from the table for something as small as player contract length, particularly cause they sign deals to players over ten years long and they want deals nothing past five years. Not a major issue and certainly something the players are willing to negotiate, but we where informed after they walked out of negotiations that it was a take it or leave it deal."
Are you even more frustrated knowing that you don't have that many hockey days left? And that you want to get as many games in you as you can?
Cullen: "I've played for a long time and I feel very fortune to have done that but you are never guaranteed another season, another game. So to miss out on an opportunity like this to play in front of your hometown fans with a team that has so much potential is and has improved so much, it definitely weighs on you a lot more. As you go on in your career each year means more and more to you cause you know it's closer to your last."
In your heart of hearts will you still play hockey this year?
Cullen: "Yeah I think so, I do, I still think so. Logically I just can't see us losing a season over these issues, but I have been proven wrong the last couple of months. I sure hope it doesn't. I just think that it would be the biggest shame and it would be so foolish I would just be absolutely disgusted."