To the surprise of nobody and with the start of AHL training camp on tap for Friday, the NHL announced the cancellation of the remaining preseason schedule on Thursday afternoon.
The Bruins had three remaining games on tap including a pair of dates at the Garden on Oct. 3 (Washington Capitals) and 5 (Buffalo Sabres) as well as a road game against the Montreal Canadiens on Oct. 6, but all seven preseason games originally scheduled have been erased from existence.
The news isnt all doom and gloom, however.
The NHL and NHLPA are set to meet for three days of meetings, discussions and negotiations starting on Friday after 12 days of silence since the lockout became official on Sept. 16. Its expected that most of the negotiations will center around non-core economic issues given the divide that exists on the split of Hockey Related Revenue, but the meetings would seem to be a goodwill effort to save the start of the season.
While wiping out the NHL preseason is a serious result of the labor issues dogging the league, the real pain wont start until the league begins announcing the cancellation of regular season games beginning on Oct. 11.
Given that the players will need at least 2-3 weeks before theyre ready for regular season games to begin, the regular season will be in danger of getting shortened if a compromise isnt hammered out quickly between the NHL and NHLPA.