Ice hockey / NHL / Lack of labor talks dooming full season, says commissioner
The NHL, which locked out its players over a month ago when the previous collective bargaining agreement expired, had set Thursday as a deadline to reach a new labor deal allowing a full season to open November 2.
A full 82-game National Hockey League season in 2012-13 is becoming increasingly unlikely because of the lack of progress between the league and union representing its locked-out players, Commissioner Gary Bettman said on Wednesday.
The NHL, which locked out its players over a month ago when the previous collective bargaining agreement expired, had set Thursday as a deadline to reach a new labor deal allowing a full season to open November 2. But Bettman, speaking at a news conference, said the prospects were dim with time running out.
"The union has chosen not to engage on our proposal or to make a new proposal of their own, so unfortunately it looks like the 82-game season is not going to be a reality," he said. "And although the clock still has a little bit of time to run, things seem to be not progressing as we would like and we are disappointed."
The NHL presented a six-year offer to the NHL Players' Association last week that proposed an equal split of hockey-related revenue. The offer was contingent on the sides reaching an agreement by Thursday so teams could hold a one-week training camp starting tomorrow.
The union offered three counterproposals last week that the league quickly shot down, saying later that all failed to approach a 50-50 split of the $3.3 billion revenue pie.
The New York Islanders are moving to Brooklyn in 2015, team owner Charles Wang announced at the news conference. The Islanders will leave their home in Long Island's Nassau County when their lease expires after the 2014-15 season.
They will share the Barclays Center with the National Basketball Association's Brooklyn Nets, who took up residence in the brand new multipurpose indoor arena last month after leaving New Jersey.
"We have entered into a 25-year agreement beginning with the 2015-16 season," Wang told the conference.
The Islanders confirmed that the team's name and logo would remain unchanged.
The announcement ended years of conjecture and debate over the Islanders' long-term future at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, which opened in 1972 when the team was admitted to the NHL.
Plans to renovate the old stadium or build a new one were rejected, prompting speculation the Islanders could shift to Brooklyn and reunite with the Nets. The Nets briefly played in Nassau before moving to Newark.