What we have feared and known for months has now become official.
The NHL has imposed a league-wide lockout.
Unable to come to terms on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, NHL Comissioner Gary Bettman locked out players at 12:01 a.m. after the Saturday night deadline passed.
NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr said this in a statement:
“Today, we suggested that the parties meet in advance of the owners’ self-imposed deadline of midnight tonight. Don Fehr, myself and several players on the negotiating committee were in the city and prepared to meet. The NHL said that it saw no purpose in having a formal meeting. There have been and continue to be private, informal discussions between representatives of both sides.”
Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard said this prior to the lockout becoming official:
“It’ll be weird. I don’t know if I’ve wrapped my head around it. It’s just one of those things you have to take day by day.”
Forward Henrik Zetterberg was angered by Bettman’s position and the previous lockout in 2004.
“We did enough last time in 2004. We gave them basically everything they wanted so we didn’t want to be in that situation (again), but here we are again.
“We’re ready to have a fight here.”
The last lockout saw the cancellation of the entire 2004-05 season.