Every professional sports league owes its very existence to its fans. Everyone associated. With the National Hockey League. -- -- fans and apology. To the situation in which we find ourselves. We are... See More
Every professional sports league owes its very existence to its fans. Everyone associated. With the National Hockey League. -- -- fans and apology. To the situation in which we find ourselves. We are truly sorry. Five months ago. I stated that the National Hockey League. Could not function without an economic system that will bring our lead into the 21 century. I said that are thirty clubs were united in their dedication. To an economic system. Under which teams and players sharing common objectives. And a commitment to our fans satisfaction. Would work together as partners. The times since then has been devoted to the pursuit of that goal. Today I can tell you that our determination. Remains every bit as strong as it was in September. And that was to secure -- partnership. Required to protect and insure the future of our -- For the benefit of the clubs. The players. And are devoted fans. When I stood before you last September. I said NHL teams will not play again until our economic problems had been solved. As I stand before you today. It is my sad duty to announce that because. The solution. Has not yet been attained. It is no longer practical to conduct even an abbreviated. Season. Accordingly I have no choice. But to announce the formal cancellation of play for 20042005. We profoundly regret the suffering. This has caused our fans. Our business partners and the thousands of people whose livelihoods depend. Upon our industry. We will continue to explore and pursue. All available options in order to achieve a successful resolution. Of this dispute. And to get the best game in the world. Back where it belongs. On the ice in front of the best fans in the world. As I also sentenced September. What we do now is not about the present. -- the short term needs of this season. Rather is it it it is about the future. Of our league and thirty teams. The NHL. Was formed in 1917. And it has played -- season through to a championship. In every year but 1919. Through the decades and the generations. We have faced a variety of crises and challenges. Some of which seem catastrophic. At the time. The league persevered through all of these adverse cities and the league will persevere through this one is well. To emerge with a framework for the future. One that is fair to everyone where our players are fairly paid receiving what we can afford. No more and no less. This is a said regrettable today that all of us wish could have been avoided.
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