Lockout Languish is Over: That’s right fans, you can break out the NHL Jerseys, foam fingers, and noise makers and get ready to go out to the hockey rink, because the 2012 NHL Lockout is officially over! The NHL, Commissioner Gary Batteman, and owners all agreed to ratify a new collective bargaining agreement last Wednesday, with the NHLPA voting to ratify as well last Saturday.The new deal includes a mutual opt-out clause after 8 years, and contract limit terms at 7 years (8 for teams re-signing its own players) according to ESPN.com.
With the new deal in the books and everybody feeling all warm and fuzzy on the inside about one another training camps opened up yesterday (Sunday Jan 13th) and a 48-game regular season is slated to begin this Saturday January 19th. A total of 720 games will be played over a 99-day regular season with the last games to be played on April 27th. The Playoffs will follow on April 30th and The Stanley Cup Finals will run no later than June 28th. Other important dates to note: The trade deadline will be April 3rd and free agency begins on July 5th.
Final Thoughts: Well, it only took both sides a little over 113 days and the cancellation of 510 regular season games (including the Winter Classic and NHL All-Star Game), but hey hockey is back, baby! Thanks to Jackpot Capital casino for offering lots of entertainment during the lockout and I’m sure many people’s social networking skills have improved too whilst waiting for this news to break. NHL fans can rejoice in knowing the league successfully avoided repeating the same fate of” The season that never was in 2004-2005″. How about it hockey fans? Are you excited about the 48-game season? Or has the lockout taken all the fun out of this year? Leave a comment below.