On the surface, this seems like a pretty stupid question. I mean, of course we all want the lockout to end as fast as humanly possible so we get our football back. There'll be relief all around - we get to see our favorite teams lining up every Sunday once again, and we bloggers get to actually cover football news instead of lists and guesswork (although a good list and guesswork piece is fun now and again). But above all... The lockout has exhausted me. Follow me below the jump and I'll explain how I think I'll feel once the lockout's over.
Like I said, the lockout has basically exhausted me. Ever since the Super (Disgusting) Bowl, the last actual football-related activity was the Draft. Aside from that, everything's been about "What are they negotiating, who's actually negotiating, why are we going to court, what's happening in court, they're negotiating again..."
Pardon me for saying, but the business side of football is boring. Fascinating, but for the love of Ditka boring.
Not only boring, but it feels like we've been inundated with both mudslinging by both sides and, above all, teased beyond belief. Remember when it seemed like they were first on the cusp of getting something done, just before midnight struck on the current CBA? They even extended the deadline and everything! Then everything broke apart and we found ourselves watching what felt like a court drama. Then the two sides began negotiating again after Kermit Bye suggested they wouldn't like the ruling if one had to be handed down.
It's been three or four weeks since negotiations began again, and already we've heard the Fourth of July, which has come and gone; we heard the end of last week, we heard the end of this week... Enough is enough already.
I'm an optimistic person by nature. If someone tells me the lockout's gonna end tomorrow, I'm going to want to believe them. But with this whole lockout business, it's hard to know what to believe. It's exhausting. And above all, it's irritating. It's irritating because I want to believe the lockout will end soon. Every time I hear something about how it's close or it could end soon, I get excited. And then I get let down. Trust me, as a Cubs fan too, I know a thing or two about being let down.
So when the lockout does finally end, how will I feel? It'll be received with a muted "Whoo-hoo." Is part of that my fault? Sure - I know a few of you have remained stoic in belief that there'll be no season, or games lost, or something. But as I said, I'm optimistic by nature. I want to believe there'll be football on time. But even if that happens, I feel like I've been teased so much by this whole thing that the excitement level just won't be there, at least not immediately.
I'm sure the excitement will return, and it'll probably kick in during the first training camp or first free agent signing. But when the news is finally broken the lockout has ended, thanks to all the teasing and taunting of "They're close to a deal," it won't be there just yet, until it feels real.