As the National Hockey League (NHL) today canceled the first two weeks of the regular season, U.S. Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) reiterated his call for the NHL and NHL Players' Association to reach an agreement that would allow the rest of the season to be played and minimize the economic impact on hockey towns across the country. The New Jersey Devils play in downtown Newark, and Lautenberg expressed concern that canceled games would severely impact the city's workers and businesses. So far the NHL has canceled the entire preseason as well as regular season games through October 24, including the first three home games for the New Jersey Devils.
"This cancellation of regular season hockey games is a blow to businesses and workers in Newark and in hockey towns across the country. Local jobs and millions of dollars of economic activity are being placed at risk every day that this dispute continues," said Senator Lautenberg. "The NHL should keep in mind that communities, workers, and families are being hurt by its decision to pursue a lockout and cancel these games. Owners and players must find a way to start the season before the economies in Newark and other communities are further damaged."
Earlier this week, Senators Lautenberg and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) sent a letter to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHL Players' Association Executive Director Donald Fehr calling for an end to the lockout.