NHL cancels first week of pre-season as labor dispute continues

  • The NHL announced on Wednesday it was canceling the first week of pre-season games due to the absence of a collective bargaining agreement.

    The NHL, currently in the midst of its fourth work stoppage in 20 years, said in a statement that the pre-season set to open on September 23 is canceled through September 30, cutting 60 games off the schedule.

    The NHL imposed a league-wide lockout over the weekend when the previous labor agreement expired with the owners and players disputing over how to divide a $3.3 billion revenue share.

    There have been no formal talks between NHL owners and the union representing its players since last Wednesday, leaving the scheduled October 11 start of the 2012-13 season in jeopardy.

    The work stoppage is the first in the NHL since a lockout led to the cancelation of an entire season in 2004-05.