For some NHL players, hope is dwindling for the 2012-13 season.
For Todd Bertuzzi, it’s been snuffed out entirely.
On Monday, the veteran Red Wings forward told MLive.com he has virtually no optimism that NHL hockey will be played this season.
“I see us losing a year,” he said.
Bertuzzi, 37, is a veteran of the lockout process. He was in camp with the Islanders during the 1994-95 season (though eventually sent back to OHL Guelph) and with the Canucks during the 2004-05 lockout.
As such, he knows this latest work stoppage could be a breaking point for fans.
“They’re not just, ‘I don’t care, I’ll come back.’ They’re getting to a point where they aren’t really even paying attention anymore,” he explained. “They’re sick and tired of hearing the same crap coming out of both sides’ mouths, and who can blame them.
On a personal level, this lockout is far different than the previous two for Bertuzzi as Steve Moore’s long-awaited civil suit looms overhead.
Jury selection is scheduled for Jan. 28 with lawyers expecting an 8-12 week trial. Moore is seeking $38 million in damages.
In February, Bertuzzi signed a two-year, $4.15 million contract extension with the Detroit Red Wings, a deal that would’ve bumped his career earnings to nearly $38 million.