Statements on the Winter Classic

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly:

“The logistical demands for staging events of this magnitude made
today’s decision unavoidable. We simply are out of time.

“We are extremely disappointed, for our fans and
for all those affected, to have to cancel the Winter Classic and Hockeytown
Winter Festival events.

“We look forward to bringing the next Winter Classic and the
Hockeytown Winter Festival to Michigan.”

Michigan Director of Athletics David Brandon:

“This is an unfortunate announcement but one that looked imminent given the current labor situation between the NHL and its players. We knew this was a possibility but we stayed prepared in the event the labor dispute would get resolved.

“Our relationship with the NHL has been terrific,” added Brandon. “Both parties have a mutual interest in making the Winter Classic a successful and historical event. We are glad they committed to bring the next game to the Big House, matching the Red Wings and Maple Leafs.”

UPDATE-And now here’s the statement from the head of the NHLPA Donald Fehr:

“The NHL’s decision to cancel the 2013 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic is unnecessary and unfortunate, as was the owners’ implementation of the lockout itself. The fact that the season has not started is a result of a unilateral decision by the owners; the players have always been ready to play while continuing to negotiate in good faith. We look forward to the league’s return to the bargaining table, so that the parties can find a way to end the lockout at the earliest possible date, and get the game back on the ice for the fans.”


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