Reporting Tim Kephart
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SUNRISE (CBSMiami) – It’s looking more and more like the Florida Panthers may not get to raise any banners this year. The NHL announced Friday that all regular season games through the month of November have been canceled due tot the ongoing owner’s lockout.
“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.
The two sides aren’t even able to agree to further talks at the present time. The NHLPA said it offered to restart talks with the NHL, but the league declined. The NHL said it would have been able to hold a complete season if a deal can be struck by November 2.
The dispute is over how to divide up the roughly $3.3 billion in hockey-related revenue the league brings in. The owners and players are likely to split the revenue at 50/50 when an eventual deal gets done, but the question is over how to pay the current contracts.
Players received roughly 57 percent of hockey-related revenue in the former collective bargaining agreement. The owners had originally sought to severely cut back on that number, but backed down to 50 percent in the offer that’s likely to be withdrawn Thursday night.
The problem gets bigger as each game gets cancelled. The league will lose revenue with each game lost and will likely seek to recoup the losses in the collective bargaining agreement.
The NHL is no stranger to lockouts/work stoppages. The league lost an entire season to a lockout just a few years ago and has lost more than 1,700 games to work stoppages since 1992.