While Mike Fisher would much prefer to be playing on a regular basis, the Nashville Predators forward is making the most of the lockout.
Fisher continues to skate three to four times a week with some of his Predators' teammates, but he admits the numbers continue to dwindle as more and more players seek opportunities overseas.
"Guys want to make sure they stay ready," said Fisher. "I went to Europe during the last lockout, but my situation is a little different this time around."
Fisher is now married and if anything the lockout is allowing him to spend more time with wife Carrie Underwood. Underwood is currently on tour promoting her latest album, Blown Away, and the work stoppage has made a roadie of Fisher.
The 32-year-old spent 16 days on the road with his wife, a luxury he wouldn't have been able to afford had the season started as planned.
"Spending time with Carrie has definitely been the bright side of the lockout," said Fisher. "I'm also hoping to get home and see my family at some point."
Fisher recently enjoyed some quality time with his two brothers and a cousin who made a road trip to Nashville for a boys weekend.
In addition Fisher has also been spending some time enjoying the outdoors, another of his passions.
"I've played some golf, done some fishing, just keeping busy."
Fisher remains hopeful that the season can still be salvaged, but definitely feels for those who have been affected by the work stoppage.
"Obviously we as players want to be playing," admitted Fisher, "but we realize there are a lot of people outside of the players and the owners who are really being hurt by the lockout and its them and the fans that I really feel for. This isn't good for anyone."