The NHL locked its doors to players and step by step scratched off the preseason. But the lockout got real Thursday as the league canceled the first two weeks of the 2012-13 regular season.
All games through Oct. 24 were wiped out, including seven for the Washington Capitals. They were set to open Oct. 12 at Verizon Center against the defending Eastern Conference-champion New Jersey Devils.
That game is gone, along with Oct. 13 at the Ottawa Senators, Oct. 15 vs. the Florida Panthers, Oct. 17 vs. the Toronto Maple Leafs, Oct. 19 vs. the Winnipeg Jets, Oct. 20 at the Montreal Canadiens and Oct. 23 at the Jets.
In total, 82 NHL games were axed. And barring a quick agreement, it’s only a matter of time until many more get the same result.
In the official release, the league was vague:
“The National Hockey League announced today the cancellation of the 2012-13 regular-season schedule through
October 24. A total of 82 regular-season games were scheduled for Oct. 11 through Oct. 24.
“The cancellation was necessary because of the absence of a Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NHL Players’ Association and the NHL.”