The National Hockey League announced Friday afternoon the cancellation of regular-season games through December 14 as a result of the lockout.
The NHL also announced the cancellation of the 2013 All-Star Weekend scheduled for Jan. 26-27 in Columbus, Ohio. A total of 422 regular-season games – 34.3 per cent of the season – were scheduled for Oct. 11 through Dec. 14.
“The reality of losing more regular-season games as well as the 2013 NHL All-Star Weekend in Columbus is extremely disappointing,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said in a statement. “We feel badly for NHL fans and particularly those in Columbus, and we intend to work closely with the Blue Jackets organization to return the NHL all-star events to Columbus and their fans as quickly as possible.”
Don Fehr, executive director of the NHLPA, released the following statement:
“On Wednesday, the players presented a comprehensive proposal, once again moving in the owners’ direction in order to get the game back on the ice. The gap that remains on the core economic issues is $182 million. On Wednesday, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said that the league is losing $18-20 million per day during the lockout, therefore two more weeks of cancelled games far exceeds the current economic gap. It makes the NHL’s announcement of further game cancellations, including the 2013 All-Star Weekend, all the more unnecessary, and disappointing for all hockey fans – especially those in Columbus. The players remain ready to negotiate but we require a willing negotiating partner.”
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Meanwhile, Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry wrote a column about the lockout for the Toronto Star that was published on Friday under the headline: “Don Cherry to players: Smarten up!” You can read the column by clicking here.
(Photo by Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)