New York, NY – The National Hockey League announced the cancellation of its 2012-13 regular-season schedule for the entire month of November on Friday.
"The National Hockey League deeply regrets having to take this action. By presenting a proposal to the NHLPA that contemplated a fair division of revenues and was responsive to Player concerns regarding the value of their contracts, we had hoped to be able to forge a long-term Collective Bargaining Agreement that would have preserved an 82-game Regular Season for our fans. Unfortunately, that did not occur," said NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly in a statement.
"We acknowledge and accept that there is joint responsibility in collective bargaining and, though we are profoundly disappointed that a new agreement has not been attained to this point, we remain committed to achieving an agreement that is fair for the Players and the Clubs -- one that will be good for the game and our fans."
The move comes one week after games through Nov. 1 were excised, and eight days after the league rejected three separate proposals presented by the NHLPA.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman submitted a six-year offer to the NHLPA on Oct. 16, one that included a 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue and allowed for a full 82-game season to begin on Nov. 2. The league's self-imposed deadline for the players' union to accept that proposal expired on Thursday.
"Last week the owners gave us what amounts to a 'take-it-or-leave-it' proposal. We responded with the framework for three proposals on the players' share, each of which moved significantly, towards their stated desire for a 50-50 split of HRR, with the only condition being that they honour contracts they have already signed. Honouring contracts signed between owners and players is a reasonable request. Unfortunately, after considering them for only 10 minutes they rejected all of our proposals," said NHLPA executive director Don Fehr in his own statement.
"Since then, we have repeatedly advised the owners that the players are prepared to sit down and negotiate on any day, with no pre-conditions. The owners refused. They apparently are only interested in meeting if we first agree to everything in their last offer, except for perhaps a few minor tweaks and discussion of their 'make whole' provision.
"The message from the owners seems to be: if you don't give us exactly what we want, there is no point in talking. They have shown they are very good at delivering deadlines and demands, but we need a willing partner to negotiate. We hope they return to the table in order to get the players back on the ice soon."
The lockout, which began on Sept. 16, has now caused the cancellation of 326 regular-season games.