Top 10 Moments of the 2012 NHL Lockout

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NHL Fans turned NFL Fans

Lockout NFL Fans
Kirby Lee - USA TODAY Sports

Even though there was a successful ending to the 2012 NHL lockout with both the NHL and NHLPA finally agreeing to tentative terms of a new 10-year CBA earlier this morning, it has been a long and winding road for everyone involved especially the fans. A shortened season may not be the perfect ending, but let's face it, it could be worse and the result could be similar to that of the 2005 lockout with a loss of the entire season altogether.

NHL Commissioner, Gary Bettman, and head of the NHLPA, Donald Fehr, represent the radical differences between two sides that remained fairly far apart through most of these past several months.  If both appear as the villains of this lockout in the minds of the majority of hockey fans then federal mediator, Scot Beckenbaugh who entered the talks Jan. 4, must be viewed as the knight-in-shining-armor.  In a complete turnaround of events that transpired between the two over the past few months, Bettman and Fehr triuphantly appeared from the very early morning talks together to make the announcement to the sparse group of media still outside in the early hours of this morning.

It would seem appropriate to give a fond farewell to the 2012 lockout and celebrate the upcoming start of the 2012-13 season by reviewing some of the top moments of the past 113 days (more negative than positive and in more of a timeline - almost like a countdown to the end of the lockout). But from its start back in September to today's end, there were highs and lows along the way that are worth looking back at one last time to help us finally usher in the hockey season.

The majority of hockey fans were frustrated throughout the lockout and continued to lose more hope for a 2012-13 season each time the NHL made an announcement about the cancellation of games. It's very likely that the fanbase the league built after the last lockout in 2005 has taken a big hit especially with many of the more casual fans.

Stephanie Lewark is a featured Pittsburgh Penguins columnist for RantSports.com. If you enjoy her articles / posts, you can follow her on Twitter (@steelcitysports), check out her personal Facebook page (via Networked Blogs), visit her personal Tumblr page, or stop by her Pinterest page.

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Sept. 16

Gary Bettman
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

The lockout began on Sept. 16 while bargaining between the NHL and NHLPA began on Jun. 29. There was plenty of back and forth between the two parties without any resolution after plenty of tweaking and rejecting before the league made the first cancellation of games.

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Sept. 19

Don Fehr
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

On Sept. 19 the NHL made it's first announcement of preseason games through Sept. 30.

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Oct. 4

Gary Bettman
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

Then on Oct. 4, the league announced the first cancellation of regular-season games from Oct. 11 through - Oct. 24.

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Oct. 26

Gary Bettman
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

The NHL made a third announcement of game cancellations through Nov. 30 on Oct 26.

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Nov. 2

2013 NHL Winter Classic
Rick Osentoski - USA TODAY Sports

The announcement that the 2013 Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maples Leafs was cancelled was made by the league on Nov. 2.

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Nov. 23

NHL All-Star
Marc DesRosiers - USA TODAY Sports

On Nov. 23, the NHL announced that games through Dec. 14 as well as the 2013 All-Star game weekend in Columbus, Oh. were cancelled.

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Dec. 10

Don Fehr
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

Another announcement was made by the league on Dec. 10 that games were cancelled through Dec. 30 which had a majority of fans losing any hope of a 2012-13 season.

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Dec. 20

Gary Bettman
Gary A. Vasquez - USA TODAY Sports

The last announcement of the final cancellation of games was made by the league on Dec. 20 taking the lockout (and cancelling games) to Jan. 14; if a deal was not agreed upon by this date, the league planned to cancel the entire season.

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Jan. 4

Don Fehr
Brad Penner - USA TODAY Sports

On Jan. 4, federal mediator Scot Beckenbaugh was included in talks between the NHL and NHLPA to help move the agreement closer to finalization.

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Jan. 6

Gary Bettman
Ron Chenoy - USA TODAY Sports

The 2012 NHL Lockout ended on Jan. 6 when the NHL and NHLPA agreed to a new 10-year CBA in the early hours of the morning and the 2012-13 season will start up in the coming weeks.

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