As the clock flipped over to midnight in the Eastern time zone, the 2012 NHL lockout became official.
Teams had to remove all images of the NHLPA players on their websites, among many other changes that happened as the previous collective bargaining agreement expired. And as the Stars updated their site, they also released a letter from owner Tom Gaglardi.
You can read the full text here, and a couple of excerpts are posted after the jump.
"While we are disappointed to have reached this stage, we are hopeful that there will be a positive and quick resolution to get hockey back on the ice as soon as possible.
Despite a delay in the start of training camp, we will continue to do everything we can to bolster this franchise and be ready to compete for the Stanley Cup
We appreciate our fans, and your continued commitment to the Stars. We ask for your patience as the owners and players work together to establish a new agreement that is mutually beneficial to the future of hockey and the Dallas Stars."
This is notable because the lockout comes at an absolutely terrible time for the Stars franchise.
This was to be their first training camp under the new ownership and a chance to pitch themselves to ticket holders who grew disillusioned at the end of the Tom Hicks era. We don't know what the personal feelings of anyone in the organization are toward the offers and counter-offers bandied back and forth from the NHL and NHLPA, but we can be pretty sure they know just how damaging a prolonged lockout could be.
Let's hope, for everyone's sake, this somehow gets resolved quickly.