|Donald Fehr responded to the NHL's decision to cancel the 2013 Winter Classic. (Getty Images)|
The 2013 Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs was the latest unnecessary casualty of the ongoing NHL lockout. The league made the announcement at 3 p.m. ET on Friday, citing logistical concerns for staging such a large event.
It still doesn't make much sense and it's difficult to fully comprehend why the league felt it needed to be done now, but it was and there is no going back.
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Shortly after the league's announcement, NHLPA leader Donald Fehr released a statement of his own on the NHL's decision. Below is that statement in its entirety:
“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.”
No talks are scheduled at this point, but deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the Canadian Press on Friday the two sides could be getting back together in the "relatively near future" at a date, time and place that's yet to be determined.
The NHL regular season schedule has already been canceled through the end of November, taking away 326 regular-season games.
Plus the Winter Classic.