The Philadelphia Flyers and Chicago Blackhawks had to settle for a scoreless tie in their preseason opener Tuesday night at Wells Fargo Center.
Of course, this wasn’t by choice as the NHL had previously cancelled all preseason games in September. While tonight’s game would have had little or no importance to the outcome of the season, it was supposed to be a little taste of what’s to come in the fall and hopefully deep into the spring.
The NHL is also getting ready to announce the cancellation of October preseason matches as well. Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News reports that all preseason games from October 1-10 will be cancelled sometime this week. Another source says the announcement could come as early as tomorrow.
The NHL and NHLPA are set to meet Friday in New York after a 2 week lay-off from talks. When the two sides last left the table they were around $1 billion apart but deputy commissioner Bill Daly says the two sides are “light years” ahead of where they were at this point in 2004.
It seems as though while slow progress is being made, progress is being made. It can only be looked at as a positive even if we’re hockey-less until late November/December. If you remember the NHL & PA didn’t even speak in 2004 until December after the CBA had expired that September.
The progress being made is not fast enough for Flyers star Claude Giroux however as Giroux has said that he is ‘bored’ with the lockout and wants to play competitive hockey. Europe is quickly becoming an option for the 24 year old Canadian. Here are Giroux’s comments in the Ottawa Sun
“My job is to play hockey. Right now, it’s too bad we don’t have the best league in the world to play in. All the guys are frustrated. The league was going uphill (and) to see that go down, it’s frustrating.
“I’m getting a little bored here just working out,” said the 24-year-old Giroux, who has risen to elite status as a winger with the Philadelphia Flyers. “I kind of want to play games … get that rush of playing in hockey games.
“I want to make sure I’m in good shape, so I think it’s a good option for me to go and play somewhere. I’m talking to my agent to see where I could go. I want to play some good, quality hockey.”