Thursday the NHL announced the cancellation of the remainder of its 2012-13 preseason schedule. This comes just one day before the league and the NHL Players Association were scheduled to meet in New York City to discuss working on a new collective bargaining agreement. The NHL already cancelled all of the September preseason games and now the decision to cancel the 47 October games which would have spanned from October 1st through the 8th which brings the total to 107 total preseason games cancelled over a 16-day period.
Friday’s meeting were the first time the two sides met since September 12th which was four days before the lockout began. The NHL says they made an offer to the NHLPA during that meeting are have been waiting for a counter offer since then. The two sides are at odds on how to split approximately $3 billion dollars in annual revenue amongst other things before they can agree on a new collective bargaining agreement.
During today’s meeting the two sides will supposedly discuss secondary issues such as grievance procedures for the players, travel accommodations, medical care, pension plans and player benefits. If there is no headway at this meeting then it could seriously jeopardize the start of the 2012-13 regular season which is scheduled to begin less than two weeks away on October 11th.
The NHL is looking to avoid having their second lockout ended season in less than a decade which would be unprecedented in the history of American professional sports.