SUNRISE (CBSMiami) – The NHL is set to cancel its annual signature game, the Winter Classic, as early as Friday, due to the ongoing owners’ lockout of the players.

The Winter Classic, an outdoor hockey game, was set to be held at the University of Michigan’s football stadium, which holds more than 110,000 fans for football. According to, the move to cancel the game was approved by the league after an internal meeting at the NHL’s offices in New York.

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The lockout has already caused hundreds of NHL games to be lost this year. The league has canceled all games until December 1 at the earliest. However, the Winter Classic at the Big House was set for January 1, which doesn’t bode well for hockey fans.

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With the cancellation of games through the end of November, the NHL has lost 326 games this season due to the lockout. Losing games to work stoppages is not a new thing for the NHL; as the league has lost more than 2,000 games due to labor problems since 1992. said the NHL and NHL Players Association have had preliminary discussions on resuming bargaining, but no firm dates, formats, or locations have been agreed upon. The two sides last met in mid-October when the owners rejected multiple proposals from the players in roughly 10 minutes.

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