It may have taken a bit longer than some fans would like, but the lockout is now officially over.
The NHL and NHLPA have signed off on a CBA Memorandum of Understanding meaning both sides have agreed to the terms contained within the new agreement. That now opens the door for the release of the NHL regular-season schedule as well as freeing up general managers to sign and trade players just two hours from now, according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie.
With just seven days before the start of the regular season, you can expect moves to come fast and furious as teams prepare for a 48-game schedule sent to end in late-April. We’ll have more on the schedule and more coming very soon.
There was a time when the NHL and KHL just couldn’t play nice.
It’s not exactly as if one side played the role of villain while the other found themselves tied to the train tracks each time, either. Both leagues seemed to have some shady moments; like the Nashville Predators still find themselves hoping that Alex Radulov will return to their team after his overseas pilgrimage.
It seems like relations between the two leagues have improved in the last couple seasons or so, though. If nothing else, they renewed their promise to honor contracts signed within either league by passing a “Memorandum of Understanding” that will be valid until June 30, 2012. That agreement basically prohibits players moving from one league to the other if they already have a valid contract with the KHL or NHL. While this might seem like an obvious move to make, it’s still a promising bit of sustained progress for the sport as a whole.
“We believe that the achievement of a consensus on the status of hockey players in both leagues will reflect positively on the broader development of the sport of hockey,” KHL president Alexander Medvedev said in a statement.