DENVER — Mayor Michael B. Hancock joined mayors and city leaders whose cities host National Hockey League teams across the country to call for the NHL owners and players to return to the bargaining table and end the lockout.
“This is about more than hockey. Our communities invest in our NHL teams, and our local businesses depend on NHL seasons. This is about our small business owners and middle-class workers: restaurateurs, hotel managers, concession workers and fans. It’s about the vitality and economic stability of our communities,” Mayor Hancock said. “We encourage NHL owners and players to return to the bargaining table and negotiate an end to this lockout.”
After canceling the preseason, NHL officials announced the cancellation of the first two weeks of hockey’s regular season last Thursday. The Colorado Avalanche home opener was scheduled for Oct. 25, leaving thousands of disappointed Avs fans missing a team that brought the city its first major professional sports championship in 1996, then another in 2001.
In a normal season, more than 15,000 people come to downtown Denver 41 times a year for an Avalanche game. If each person spends $50 outside their ticket price, canceling those games has an estimated economic impact of $31.8 million per season on downtown Denver’s economy.