NHL scraps the first week of preseason

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NHL scraps the first week of preseason

The National Hockey League’s lockout claimed its first casualties as the league said on Wednesday it cancelled the first week of preseason games given the absence of a collective bargaining agreement.

The NHL, in the midst of its fourth work stoppage in 20 years, said in a statement that the preseason set to open on Sept. 23 is canceled through Sept. 30, chopping 60 games off the schedule.

A league-wide lockout was imposed by the NHL on the weekend when the previous labor agreement expired with the owners and players at odds over how to divide a $3.3 billion revenue pie.

There have been no formal talks between NHL owners and the union representing its players since last Wednesday, leaving the scheduled Oct. 11 start of the 2012-13 season in doubt.

The work stoppage is the first in the NHL since a lockout wiped out the entire 2004-05 campaign, and the upcoming season could see the same fate as the two sides remain at a stalemate over key economic issues.

Reuters

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