The NHL is inching closer and closer to a lockout and it appears virtually certain that one is going to happen for at least some length of time.
So, what happens to the former UND players who are under NHL contracts?
The guys who are on two-way deals — such as Chay Genoway, Ben Blood, Jason Gregoire and Brock Nelson — will likely play in the American Hockey League (this also means AHL and ECHL roster spots may be ultra-competitive this season).
During the last lockout, Zach Parise was one of the guys who played in the AHL on an entry-level deal.
But for the guys who are on one-way deals and cannot go to the AHL, it is either sit and wait or go to Europe.
According to several news reports recently, Jonathan Toews is among the NHL players considering going to Europe. His agent told a newspaper that he would under the right circumstances and timing (read more here).
During the last lockout, a handful of players did this as well, including UND’s Jason Blake. That lockout lasted an entire season.
It’s hard to believe that the NHL could possibly put its fans through another year of no hockey, but the players will have to keep their games up somehow. And that might mean superstars are headed to Europe.