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NHL cancels first two weeks of the schedule

Oct 4, 2012, 2:04 PM EDT

Gary Bettman Getty Images

It’s official, the lockout has cost the NHL and its players the first chunk of regular season games.

The NHL announced it’s canceling the first two weeks worth of the schedule from October 11-24 thanks to the lockout. In all, that makes 82 games to be canceled by the league. The wording of the NHL release leaves open the possibility the games could be rescheduled should a new CBA be worked out.

This marks the first time since the 2004-05 labor dispute that the league has canceled games. As you probably remember, the entire season was wiped out then.

While the league is doing that, Chris Johnston of The Canadian Press reports the two sides haven’t scheduled a date to meet again and it doesn’t appear likely they’ll get together until next week.

  1. biffnasty - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    Nice work Gary. You are a wonderful commish(sarcasm)

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:18 PM

      Indeed, such a fine steward of the game. Seems to me that after some of the painfully dull games in the last playoffs and the ongoing problems with concussion and other dreadful injuries, he’s admitting that the best product his league can put out is no product at all. It’s very unfortunate for all the low-paid peripheral workers who need their modest salaries.

    • elemeno89 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:38 PM

      something about an ex-basketball executive sounding off against a baseball guy to determine the future of hockey kind of made me nervous. now i know why…

    • rickd58 - Oct 4, 2012 at 7:10 PM

      What are they thinking!!!!!!!!!!! or should we say do they even think?????
      sure as hell they don’t care about the FAN’s…CORPORATE GREED AT IT’S BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • habsfaninnb - Oct 4, 2012 at 10:09 PM

        rickd58, what do you expect from greedy Americans. They don’t care anything about the game except the bottom line. The more teams Canada can call back the better, but as long as bettman runs the league you can count on that little pimp bastard will keep the league paying to keep phoenix in the desert.

    • livin2rock - Oct 5, 2012 at 1:09 AM

      Three lockouts in the last 18 years under his watch. Yeah, he’s great.

  2. mjasper24 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Gary B. I accept you’re resignation.

  3. antkowiak666 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:18 PM

    F!@$ the NHL!!!!

  4. peconicgp - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    How many have called NHLs office? Let them know how you feel and keep it civil! (212) 789-2000

    • ctkerrigan - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:31 PM

      Just called, left a message on the “Fan Line”. Not sure if it’ll make a difference or not, but EVERYONE should call! Don’t just sit there and complain: CALL!

    • ironpeddler255 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:54 PM

      We’ve been calling since the day after the Kings won the Cup to ask “WHEN WILL THE NEGOTIATIONS BEGIN SO WE WILL AVOID A LOCKOUT?”

      You can see how much that helped. When you have a stacked deck of cards, it’s hard to get a fair deal…and both sides are fighting to stack the deck!

  5. tronn25 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    Hey PBS or any other non-major network, figure out a deal to air the European/KHL games and make some $$$. Fans will still watch, and the NHL can take a step back and F!@$ itself.

    • rjthedog - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:37 PM

      Actually… espn (of all ppl) just cut a deal and Will be airing KHL games here in the states…limited amount of games for now, but they said if the whole nh season is cancelled, they will air alot more.

  6. sippindasyzurp - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    You know for all the rhetoric that these sides were spewing that they want to get this deal done for the fans and all the other people who have jobs that rely on the NHL, I am really disappointed in both sides…

    All they do is say “were waiting for them to negotiate”… My thought is now that this will last the entire season unless they decide to get a third party to come in and help move the negotiations along.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:07 PM

      If one person/side’s definition of “compromise” is: You agreeing to my proposal, well, negotiations are going to be very difficult. They seem to need to have a grown-up in the room to guide them to a middle ground they can both be equally upset with.

  7. elemeno89 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    didnt start to really follow hockey until after the last lockout. it became my favorite sport. period. and i hoped that i would never have to live though without knowing what it feels like to have a lockout cancel games. watching the puck drop in buffalo, or anywhere for that matter is something that i hold dear, and now i know what the fans went through SEVEN YEARS AGO.

    shame on you GB, the Governors, and the NHLPA, this could all have been prevented…

    “We still have time to make a deal.” – Donald Fehr

    “I want to play too” – Gary Bettman

    Looks like you stuck to your words boys… thanks…

  8. ctkerrigan - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    So, they’re not talking, not trying, and don’t seem to care of we have hockey this year or not. Call, write, blog, do WHATEVER it takes to let them know that we THE FANS are NOT happy!

  9. jernster21 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:29 PM

    And this is the day I cancel my season tickets. I’m not going to continue to let my credit card get hit every month for a product that is not returned, to do so would indicate that I’m in support of what’s going on, when I’m not. It’s absolutely unacceptable for a GROWING business to lock the doors when it comes down to a number of percentage points that I can count on my fingers. Bettman is running this league into the ground.

  10. ironpeddler255 - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    Why is it that the people on both sides are not working on a settlement EVERY DAY until they hammer out an agreement? Why do they meet in different city after different city with days or weeks in between bargaining sessions? Do they WANT to end this?…or is this an exercise in futility?

    This whole thing stinks to High Heaven…

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:14 PM

      Because they’re more interested in wasting more time, money, the workers & fans patience ! It’s all for the sake of winning the PR battle ! Little do they know that the fans already have the politicians to blow smoke up there bums !

  11. emilioiii - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    I’m cancelling Center Ice subscription today… BTW, tronn25, although it seems tacky to mention it on NBC’s website, ESPN just got a contract to broadcast KHL games.

  12. mountainmantride - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    All it takes is the KHL to a) continue to sign the top players from the NHL and b) stream their games online (which is the wave of the future of sports that has already begun, with sponsor money included) and presto who cares whether we watch the NHL or not. That, my friends (and team owners), is the real risk at hand for the owners and the league. When the players can play elsewhere, and yes indeed they can, plus when the fans can access those games, and yes they will, then the NHL ceases to be relevant.

    • islesjb - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:54 PM

      KHL < NHL
      Watching games on TV < Going to the arena to watch your favorite team play

      Having access to the KHL is not going to make the NHL irrelevant. If anything, watching a diluted KHL product will make people yearn more for the real thing. I'm not saying its positive for the owners but they're not at risk of ceasing to be relevant… Let's face it- when a CBA is worked out, the players will be back and so will we.

      Although, if the entire season is lost, the NHL will take a huge step back in terms of popularity and it will take it several years to get back to where it was after the conclusion of the 2011-12 season.

      • eyeh8goodell - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:17 PM

        NHL players doesn’t dilute the KHL, it strengthens it. Don’t know how much KHL you watch, but it’s a very good brand of hockey…….easily the best in the world outside the NHL. If you don’t think so then perhaps you can explain why the NHL guys aren’t exactly dominating there right now. It’s just a different style of game on a larger surface, which is better for the skill guys because they have more space.

      • islesjb - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:53 AM

        Obviously NHL players don’t dilute the talent of the KHL, since the NHL is where the best players in the world play. I meant that with so many NHL stars going over to the KHL, the KHL will be a watered down version of the NHL (mix of NHL talent and 2nd tier KHL talent).

        I didn’t mean to knock the KHL and you’re right, I don’t watch a lot of it but I just don’t see how it ever possibly compare with the NHL in terms of talent and excitement.

      • manchestermiracle - Oct 5, 2012 at 11:02 AM

        islesjb: If the NHL isn’t playing and the KHL is, well, then, that makes the KHL a superior product. The longer the NHL stumbles around and alienates its fans the stronger alternate leagues become. If your product is entertainment and you have no shows scheduled, nor any actors to stage the shows, then you certainly do quickly become irrelevant.

  13. kmacle - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:40 PM

    That does it for me. I’m not willing to keep watch as the season dies.
    Best of luck.

  14. joeyashwi - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    Congrats NHL! Now you can enjoy your larger piece of a smaller pie. We the fans are tired of this crap.

  15. steverolley - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    I really hope this isn’t just talk,

    After the last lockout there wasn’t a single boycott, hopefully this time fans are serious about making the owners and players pay for their greed.

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:18 PM

      You know that’ll never happen ! Although, I wished everybody could hold out but it’ll never happen . Because as soon as the CBA is agreed upon, everyone will flock back to the stadiums !

  16. grillmarks - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:01 PM


  17. toosano - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:09 PM

    Ultimately, this is an insult to all hockey fans. They could care less about us.

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:23 PM

      No truer words have ever been spoken !

  18. duanegallant - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:12 PM

    What about the workers who are behind the scene making sure we have our entertainment value? Most of them are probably part time workers, making a small wage. Shame on the whole bunch of them! I still can’t get over how they cancelled an entire season over the same issue in 2004. Everybody is overpaid. I’m sorry, but I have no sympathy over people squacking over millions of dollars. Are hockey players (or any other sport for that matter) worth more than doctors? Are hockey players worth more than people who risk their lives defending their country?
    Stop the whining, and play hockey! Ted Lindsay is probably rolling his eyes, already.
    The union has far too much control. But the owners made this mess.

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:28 PM

      I agree with you 100% . But, if the League, Owners, & the NHLPA don’t give a deuce about us fans, they won’t care about the workers, or their families either !

    • williplett - Oct 5, 2012 at 12:25 AM

      Ted Lindsay was punished by the Red Wings for essentially trying to unionize NHL players. Why would he be rolling his eyes,already?

      • duanegallant - Oct 5, 2012 at 10:50 AM

        Ted Lindsay would be rolling his eyes over the amount of money that is currently on the table (today)!
        Do you think he or anyone of that era saw that kind of money? It was through his efforts that we currently see a strong and very rich players union today. It would be interesting to see what kind of pension, if any, that those former NHL’ers of “the day” make today.
        The players “of today” have too much control!

  19. jimw81 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:16 PM

    Thank you Gary, Bill and Jeremy for hitting self-destruct button

  20. paledevil - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    PM of CA

    Stephen Harper

    It means the most to your guys

  21. joeyashwi - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    Unfortunately, toosano absolutely hits the nail on the head. Not much more needs to be said.

  22. paledevil - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    This whole thing shows the genius and folly of trickle down economics

  23. sjsharks66 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:23 PM

    I wish they understood how important hockey is to some. If I come home late and miss the first pick drop, even if I missed it by a minute. I feel like the game is completely different. Fans even have these weird rituals and things the players have.
    Mine and thousands of others favorite time of the year is now ruined…

    • jcarroon - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:37 PM

      Well thank God I am in a locality with an AHL team and we began our pre season play yesterday and the practice rink was packed with screaming fans and it was just great!

      • sabatimus - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:58 PM

        Portland Pirates for the win!

  24. mpg44 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    I say as right now …. We the fans hereby cancel the rest of your season and income!!! Thanks for showing me how not to care . I will use this new skill right now!!

  25. xaf605 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    Well just like everything else all the money and jobs being shipped overseas

  26. chrisvegas - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    Could the NHL be anymore disappointing to the fans? The NHL has once again FAILED the fans of the game over greed. They don’t deserve to be successful. Any Success the NHL has comes from the players and the fact that hockey is a great sport. Those running the NHL have done everything they could to destroy this league and their success has nothing to do with the Owners or Buttman. I personally have never been so disgusted with a league as I am with this lockout. I don’t expect hockey this season because the Owners are not going to accept a compromise and they players are rightfully united. The Players are also going to be able to last playing in other leagues around the world. The real losers in this are those who will not be able to work based on this lockout.

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:42 PM

      How can you say the Union is united ? The star players that are holding this process up are F$&@ING over the non-star players for their own sakes ! I hardly believe if the League started up tomorrow with replacement players, it wouldn’t be long before the non-star players started crossing the line to collect their PAYCHECKS ! With that said how long do you think before the stars started flocking back to the NHL ?

      • williplett - Oct 5, 2012 at 12:42 AM

        If this is simply about paychecks, then I’m guessing that the guys who went to the KHL are pretty stoked about the fact that the league has some money to throw around and they do not have to pay any taxes out of those paychecks.

      • chrisvegas - Oct 5, 2012 at 2:27 PM

        Easy. Because it is united and it is obvious to anyone who pays attention. This time around is alot different then the last lockout. The communication between the players this time around is so much better then the last time through social media sites ect… The players are much more involved in the process (attending meetings) this time around then they were last time. Why do you think that there is a mass movement of players going overseas to play in other leagues? They know hockey is done for a while here and they can earn a paycheck overseas (good money). We didn’t see nearly as many players go play overseas last lockout. The last lockout there were legit reason for a lockout and the Owners had a better arguement. The players took over a 20% paycut last lockout and agreed to a cap structure. This time around the owners are just trying to take advantage of the players. They are demanding the players take an additional 23% paycut. Trust me this united the players. I don’t think the players are going to fold anytime soon when there is plenty of work overseas. I think the Owners are going to lose this battle. The US dollar is losing its value and other countries can better compete financially now then ever before. I’m telling you the owners will lose this battle. The players have stated they will compromise, but the owners are being unreasonable.

  27. sailbum7 - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:41 PM

    The NHL has a small enough fan base as it is without alienating a large number of fans with this lockout and cancelled games. The two sides need to get together pronto and work this out before they lose even more fans, which translates into lost revenue for the teams and lower salaries for everyone involved. They lost a huge chunk of the fan base with the last lockout and I am not sure that they have even fully recovered from that mess, now they are doing it again. Both sides will never learn.

  28. arsement - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    Apology accepted.

  29. lrg51 - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:20 PM

    THIS is what happens for a 2ND TIME when owners bring in a basketball guy to oversee the NHL. HUGE MISTAKE!!

  30. thedavesiknowiknow - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:27 PM

    Advantage: Owners. They’re losing less money by cancelling these games.

  31. johninpa - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

    Just checked schedule and ticket prices for the Erie Otters, our local OHL team. Two for $20 on the weekends. Sounds good. See ya, NHL.

    • bennywuh - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:15 PM

      Chicago Wolves are an unreal team! Guess my sons first hockey game will be AHL – thats fine by me.

      • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:51 PM

        You’re lucky ! You have a lot of hockey in your neck of the woods . We in STL have, the CHL hockey club that we just got & that’s it !

    • livin2rock - Oct 5, 2012 at 1:17 AM

      You can’t go wrong with the Ontario Hockey League.

  32. jdillydawg - Oct 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

    But since just about every team goes to the playoffs and they last for about 8 months, can’t they just go straight to the playoffs without missing a beat?

    Sarcasm aside, the good news is that the Kings have a really good shot at holding the Stanley Cup for two years now!

    • jtrain1966 - Oct 4, 2012 at 10:15 PM

      That’s the only way they’ll hold on to it for 2 years ! LOL !

  33. kalfut321 - Oct 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    Go Hartford Whale!!! Lets get the euro leagues in America fill the stadiums next and say goodby to the NHL

  34. jdillydawg - Oct 4, 2012 at 5:04 PM

    …and Seattle thinks bringing the NHL to town is a good idea…Good lord.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Oct 4, 2012 at 5:46 PM

      How could anyone not want to emulate the financial success enjoyed by the Phoenix franchise? Or Atlanta?

  35. bennywuh - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    Watch more college hockey!

  36. bubblehead22 - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    Thanks NHL, great business model for a sports league. A work stoppage on average of every five years. That sure makes me want to invest more of my time and money into being a fan and supporting the sport.

    Two things to consider:

    One, most teams are not in Canada where hockey rules and without American fans there is no NHL (no offense intended)

    Two, the league needs places to move the struggling teams or it will have to contract. What city in this economy would invest in the required infrastructure only to see the return on that investment altered or lost because the NHL seems to have to regroup every 5 years on average….

  37. habsfaninnb - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Way to go bettman, your the most dispised man in Canada, usa, and all north American sports. You can be rest assured that if any die hard hockey fan like myself wouldn’t think twice about kicking your nuts so hard they would be hanging out your nostrils better still kick your ass you would need to remove shirt to have a dump. Hope your having a wonderful time you POS.

    • livin2rock - Oct 5, 2012 at 1:28 AM

      Toronto Sun columnist Steve Simmons was quoted as saying “Every time Gary Bettman opens his mouth, I’d like to slam my fist into his mouth…and I’m not a violent person by nature.” He come across as very arrogant & condescending, with the attitude “I’m the smartest one in the room.”

  38. warrenlevine - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:43 PM

    Some of you irate commenters should use the lockout time to read a f**king book. You have no idea how to write; “Your” instead of “You’re” – no one knows “it’s” from “its” – and “there” “they’re” and “their” are used interchangeably.

    In other words, STAY THE F**K IN SCHOOL!!!

    • ddkendall - Oct 5, 2012 at 10:20 PM

      I find it somewhat ironical that someone who seems to present him/herself as a linguistics expert cannot formulate a rebuttal without having to resort to profanity.

  39. jhuck92 - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    It’s gonna be a long winter… :\

  40. ddkendall - Oct 4, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    Well NHL, you gone and done it. I will show you the same respect and regard you show me. You will not find me in the arena any time soon and it doesn’t matter whether you settle you bickering or not. Millionares arguing with billionares. What a sick state of affairs. Bettman is a Vladimer Putin look alike anyway. I have vented now, I will prepare to watch some good college hockey.

  41. mountainmantride - Oct 4, 2012 at 7:13 PM

    And, don’t forget to check out NCAA hockey. Great action, young exciting players. So fans we have the KHL, AHL, Junior hockey (support your local hockey teams), NCAA among others. I’m saying goodbye to the NHL. Get your money from someone else, it’s not going to be my money you’re getting…nope, nada.

  42. sharkiesgirl - Oct 4, 2012 at 7:15 PM

    Went to my first ECHL game last night, and first ever game for the San Francisco Bulls. The level of game play was better than I expected, and so much fun to watch! I’ll get my hockey fix despite you, NHL. So there. :p

  43. xaf605 - Oct 4, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    Wow now this is writing class

  44. richc111 - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:03 PM

    I am really starting to lose interest in Professional sports. All it is a bunch of billionaires and millionaires fighting over my money and how much of it the each get. Will they ever just give back some to the fans instead of just splitting an ever growing pot of our money

  45. thegroovinone - Oct 4, 2012 at 10:40 PM

    I just find it ..Ironic..that it is the fans who have paid for full price for what it is both sides have now….(Lots of money in the kitty)..and yet they whine..on both sides..seen as the fan pays big dollars for ice hockey and sports entertainment….why cant it be labeled..the
    E S L..esental services” league..take care

    • richc111 - Oct 4, 2012 at 11:06 PM

      You know what would be great if the fans got a union and got to sit at the table. That would be the end of professional sports as we know it. Go back to the old days before it became a business. But we all know fans are addicted and most could never stick together.

  46. livin2rock - Oct 5, 2012 at 1:24 AM

    You can’t fault the players for taking long term security. None of them would dare come out & say “That’s too much money for me.” Blame the owners who created this mess, then have the temerity to cry poor. Nobody held a gun to their heads and forced them to sign Rick Di Pietro, Ilya Kovalchuk, Zack Parise, Ryan Suter & Shea Weber to those massive long term deals.

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