The chance of another work stoppage amid labour talks between the NHL and NHL Players' Association would not be a surprise from a celebrated player who saw it all first-hand from the bargaining table seven years ago.
Former NHLPA president Trevor Linden told TEAM 1040 in Vancouver on Wednesday that he wouldn't be surprised to see a lockout take up a couple of months, but couldn't see a labour stoppage extend into December.
"I would not be surprised to see a couple months go down," Linden told the Vancouver radio station. "When you talk about ownership, especially in the States, they look at October and November as just dead – really tough months for them. They're dealing with Major League Baseball, the World Series, the NFL, so their season starts in December and works through January, February, March. So if they're going to miss anything, they want to miss those months."
Last week, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr confirmed that both sides hope to begin discussions on a new collective agreement in the next few weeks.
Bettman told reporters at his news conference that the league enjoyed record revenues of $3.3 billion US this past season.
"Missing any time would be a shame and would hurt the momentum when you think of some of the markets that are emerging a little bit and some of the non-traditional ones," said Linden.
"Maybe Phoenix could build off new ownership and the playoff success they had, and Nashville has a good thing going down there, so you'd hate to see any time lost but it's certainly possible. I wouldn't be surprised to see a couple months lost, but I would be surprised to see it go past December."