The Sabres, who are losing millions in revenue every week because owners elected to shut down the NHL, share in the pain of local businesses that are struggling because of the lockout. It appears they share in the frustration of fans, too.
“We empathize with the frustrations that small business owners and fans alike from the Buffalo area have in regards to the NHL Lockout,” Sabres President Ted Black said in a Buffalo News story about the economic impact of the work stoppage. "We understand that many businesses have been negatively impacted by the ongoing labor dispute."
The use of empathize rather than sympathize is interesting. The Sabres obviously can empathize in terms of finances (though to a wildy different degree than a small business). To admit to feeling the frustration of fans is very telling -- especially since lockout comments by league personnel are essentially prohibited.
The rest of Black's statement reads: "We are very disappointed the NHL and NHLPA have not been able to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement. We continue to have full confidence the NHL will negotiate a fair agreement on our behalf and on behalf of all the other NHL Clubs.”