Welcome back to another work week.
Let’s just get it out of the way right now – here’s the letter from the NHL to the fans. From the NHL official website:
The following message to fans was issued by the National Hockey League on Sunday:
Despite the expiration of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the National Hockey League has been, and remains, committed to negotiating around the clock to reach a new CBA that is fair to the Players and to the 30 NHL teams.
Thanks to the conditions fostered by seven seasons under the previous CBA, competitive balance has created arguably the most meaningful regular season in pro sports; a different team has won the Stanley Cup every year; fans and sponsors have agreed the game is at its best, and the League has generated remarkable growth and momentum. While our last CBA negotiation resulted in a seismic change in the League’s economic system, and produced corresponding on-ice benefits, our current negotiation is focused on a fairer and more sustainable division of revenues with the Players — as well as other necessary adjustments consistent with the objectives of the economic system we developed jointly with the NHL Players’ Association seven years ago. Those adjustments are attainable through sensible, focused negotiation — not through rhetoric.
This is a time of year for all attention to be focused on the ice, not on a meeting room. The League, the Clubs and the Players all have a stake in resolving our bargaining issues appropriately and getting the puck dropped as soon as possible. We owe it to each other, to the game and, most of all, to the fans.
More importantly, here’s MiHockey publisher Darren Eliot explaining why the NHL can never cause a lockout in Michigan.
We will be here to help you through the lockout, and more importantly, help keep you connected to hockey. For starters, here’s the complete list of college hockey games to be played in the Mitten this year. There are more schedules to come throughout the week, too.
A season preview and a round-up of how the Michigan-based NAHL teams did in the NAHL Showcase can be found right here.
It wasn’t all bad news on Saturday; Michigan native Cam Fowler inked a big contract extension with the Ducks.
The National Team Development Program U18 team kicked off their season on Saturday, beating the Youngstown Phantoms 7-1 at Orchard Lake St. Mary’s arena. The next day, the Phantoms rallied to beat the U17s 4-3 at the Cube.
We shared the NHL letter, here’s the video from the NHLPA.
Outside the Mitten
The lockout means an uncomfortable stretch of time for unrestricted free agents, who are going to be forced to wait until a deal in made to get a deal of their own.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle will add some star-power to the AHL this season, as both will skate with the Oklahoma City Barons.
Shane Doan is officially staying in Phoenix after signing a four-year deal with the Coyotes.
Sauce Hockey is now the official lifestyle clothing provider of the USHL.
Check it out
Puck Daddy provides hockey fans with the ‘NHL Lockout Soundtrack’ – a collection of YouTube videos of hockey fans sharing their frustration.
See you tomorrow everyone. Remember, hockey never stops.