If you picked up today’s sports section in your local newspaper your eyes might have come across a page with what appears to be a letter and a couple graphics at the bottom. At the top it read “THE NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE” with a few paragraphs underneath.
What you read was a letter the league paid for in several major newspapers in North America. In the photo below you see what appeared in the Detroit Free Press. Here is a transcript of what the letter to the fans contained if you don’t subscribe to a newspaper. This also appears at Pro Hockey Talk.
As your teams prepare for the opening face-off of the 2012-13 season, we thank you for your patience and we apologize to you for the time we missed. From today forward, we will do everything we can to make this season worth the wait.
We are committed to earning back your trust and support the same way it’s earned on the ice: with hard work and unwavering dedication. Your cheers drive us forward, and we’re committed to making you proud to be a fan – by delivering a game with the action, the skill and the intensity you deserve.
Like you, we’ve missed NHL hockey. We’ve missed the clutch goals, the big hits, the electrifying saves. We’ve missed the flash of red light, the sound of the siren and the way the building shakes when the home team scores.
It’s time to focus on the best athletes in the world, on the enduring greatness of the game and – above all – on the connection that binds fans, players and families everywhere. NHL hockey is the best in the world. The future is incredibly bright. So let’s drop the puck and marvel at all the remarkable things the players do with it.
With respect and appreciation,
The National Hockey League.
P.S. The Red Wings are planning special events and unique opportunities to welcome you back. We hope you’ll get in on the action. And again, thank you.
The NHL still hasn’t gone the way of the NFL and offer their cable television package for free post-lockout. In 2011 after the NFL lockout (which only lost one exhibition game) gave fans the Sunday Ticket package for free. As of now the Center Ice package isn’t free, and they will also have one less subscriber in yours truly.