Shaun Suisham knows what Penguins fans are going through with the NHL currently locked out. As a hockey fan himself, he wants hockey.
Suisham also knows what the Penguins themselves are going through. As the Steelers' kicker, he experienced a lockout during the 2011 offseason.Yesterday, the Wallaceburg, Ont. native talked about the NHL lockout as well as his experience during the NFL's lockout.
Are you nervous the NHL season could be delayed or even canceled due to the lockout?
"It affects me as a fan but it’s nothing personal necessary. ‘Nervous’ might not be the right word but I would hate to see this drag out as ours did. For the sake of the players, the teams and the fans it would be great if they could get this thing resolved fairly quickly."
You were still in college at Bowling Green when the last lockout started. What was that like for you as a fan?
"When I was living in Ohio going to school there, I was in college and I had a limited amount of stations so I was getting the Blue Jackets and I had a hard time with the commentators. I didn’t watch a lot of hockey when I was in college. It wasn’t until I was out of college that I started watching more of it."
As a football player who was recently locked out, do you side with the NHLPA in its dispute with the NHL?
"I certainly don’t know the details like I did with our lockout. I just hope they come to terms with something fair for both sides and just get back to playing the game."
What is it like being locked out?
"Your life is in limbo. So you don’t have a set itinerary. You can’t really plan for anything. You just have to train and hope for the best."
You grew up a Maple Leafs fan. Is it a sore subject to point out the last time they made the playoffs was before the 2004-05 lockout?
"Well maybe that’s good luck for them. ... (Laughs)... But I’m a fan of hockey. I’m in Pittsburgh. I root for the Penguins."
(Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images)