Sports Commission ‘hopeful’ NHL proposal will save All-Star Game for Columbus
By Jeff Bell, Staff reporter – Business First
On Tuesday, owners introduced a new proposal in an effort to end the
player lockout that began Sept. 15. It includes a 50-50 split of
hockey-related revenues between owners and players and a full 82-game
schedule that would begin Nov. 2.
The NHL Players Association has yet to respond to the owners’ new offer.
Tuesday that one source told ESPNNewYork.com the All-Star Game,
scheduled Jan. 27 in Nationwide Arena, could be in jeopardy so
regular-season games could be played that week. But Linda Logan, executive director of the Greater Columbus Sports Commission, said an NHL official told her Wednesday the all-star contest would be included in the league’s compressed schedule.
That is good news for Columbus, which would benefit from an estimated $12 million in visit spending from the All-Star Game and accompanying festivities.
“We’re still very hopeful and happy there’s been some movement (in
the contract negotiations),” Logan said, adding the local All-Star Game
committee continues planning for the event.
She also said the NHL has not set a deadline for when the game will
be cancelled should the lockout continue into November. The NHL pulled
the plug on Nov. 3, 2004, for an all-star game to have been played in
Atlanta during the 2004-05 season that was lost to a labor dispute
between owners and players.
Jeff Bell covers public policy, utilities, energy and the business of sports for Business First.