If you were getting excited for the 2012 NHL season, I’d suggest you hold your horses. Thursday afternoon the dreaded news was announced - the first official two weeks of the NHL season have been canceled. Yep, that’s 82 games completely washed. The Blackhawks lose their first five games (Oct. 13 vs. Columbus, Oct. 16 at Winnipeg, Oct. 18 vs. Colorado, Oct. 20 vs. Detroit and Oct. 23 at St. Louis).
Bill Daly, the NHL’s deputy commissioner, issued a statement Thursday regarding the cancellations:
“We were extremely disappointed to have to make today’s announcement. The game deserves better, the fans deserve better and the people who derive income from their connection to the NHL deserve better.”
Uh, yea we do. I just find the whole lockout scenario a bit “over-done” these days, specifically with professional hockey. Been there, done that. In 2004 the NHL suspended play for an entire season – that lockout wasn’t enough? I admit the 2004-2005 season lockout actually revived the NHL because some truly positive factors of play resulted from it (any hockey fan loves a good shoot out) and ultimately increased TV ratings and general popularity. This lockout is just making players and fans angry. Why can’t the season begin on time while negotiations are being worked on? NHL hockey players are looking into other options overseas – mostly the KHL (who has a new agreement with ESPN as well) to keep their skills sharp. Shouldn’t the NHL want to keep their players here?
This lockout is depressing, our hockey hunks are leaving the U.S. and who knows when they will be back. Get comfortable, it looks like we’re going to be here in lockout-land for a while folks.