(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.)
By LARRY LAGE
AP Hockey Write
The NHL, its teams and players have some work to do to win back their fans after the third work stoppage in less than two decades.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, owners and players have said they're sorry in various ways. Teams have tried to apologize with free tickets and food, discounted gear and access to the players.
The harder work begins Saturday, when 13 games open a lockout-shortened season. It's a 48-game sprint to the playoffs.
Sports consultant Marc Ganis says the league is skating against a steep incline in many parts of the United States. Ganis says while he expects it to be business as usual in NHL hotbeds such as Detroit, the league struggles in many markets without a rich hockey history.

Top NHL Public Bets

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Predators vs. Islanders Pick Can the Nashville Predators pick up an important road win when they take on the New York Islanders tonight at...
Thumbnail Wild vs. Red Wings Prediction Are the Red Wings a good bet to beat the Wild today at 12:30PM ET when they host Minnesota in one of their final home games?
Thumbnail Blackhawks vs. Panthers Prediction Are the Blackhawks a good bet to beat the Panthers tonight when the two clash at 7:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Stars vs. Sharks Prediction Will the Dallas Stars pull off the upset tonight as a home underdog versus the San Jose Sharks at 8:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Hosts still pushing for playoff spot   Maple Leafs rookie Auston Matthews snapped a seven-game goalless drought when he potted his 32nd marker of the season Saturday. Can Ontario’s darling carry that...

NHL Team Pages