With the lengthy negotiations now complete, and finally, a full season of NHL hockey awaiting us this fall, I’m very excited to be writing you.
Certainly, this past year has been a trying time for everyone in the hockey community. The owners' lockout had a crippling effect on far too many people—on you, our loyal fans, and on those that rely on this sport for their livelihood. It’s for this reason, having already missed a full season of the game we all love, that the players realized the sport could not afford to miss one more game.
I’ve spoken with many players, and there is one sentiment that they’d like to share with you: That is, at each step we made major efforts to reach a fair deal for both sides, offering many concessions in our attempts to save the season from being cancelled by the owners. Being locked-out and unable to compete as NHL players was a frustrating situation, but it was made more difficult knowing that the fans were getting caught up in the negotiations rather than the excitement of the game. It’s definitely encouraging to know that we can now move on and focus our energy on the upcoming season.
On behalf of all NHLPA members, I thank you for your patience and commitment to the game. With some of the new changes that this agreement brings forward, I’m confident that you’ll be intrigued and impressed with how they enhance the game experience. We’re proud to have the best fans in sports, and we’re eager to put on our skates and bring the excitement of the world’s best hockey back to the ice.
You deserve nothing less!