Tonight was supposed to be a wild night at Verizon Center.
It was supposed to be the Pittsburgh Penguins’ first visit of the season to face the Capitals and you can bet there would have been more than a few fans dressed as baby Sidney Crosbys, pacifiers and all.
Instead, tonight is just another dark night for the NHL, now in its 46th day under a league-imposed lockout.
Including tonight’s canceled showdown between Crosby and Alex Ovechkin, the Capitals have now missed 10 regular season games in October and on Wednesday players missed their second paycheck of the season.
That doesn’t mean the well has run completely dry.
On Tuesday, NHL players received one-time escrow checks amounting to 8 percent of last year’s salaries, before taxes.
In the case of Ovechkin, that escrow check amounted to $720,000 on top of the $6 million he’s making with Dynamo Moscow of the KHL. But in the case of Jay Beagle, who is not playing in an alternative league, his escrow check amounts to $42,000 before taxes.
With no talks between the league and players scheduled, the NHL’s biggest regular season signature event, the 2013 Winter Classic, is expected to be canceled as early as Thursday.