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NLL: Twitter Reacts to League Cancelling First Two Weeks of the Season

News that the National Lacrosse League was going to cancel the first two weeks of the season due to disagreements based on negotiations regarding the collective bargaining agreement between the league and the Professional Lacrosse Players Association (PLPA) spread quickly on Thursday.

BONUS: For context on how we got to this point, listen to Evan Schemenauer and Jake Elliott talk with the PLPA President and Executive Director on the Lacrosse Classified Podcast here.

Colorado Mammoth Toronto Rock NLL 2018

The story was reported by Lacrosse Classified host Jake Elliott via Twitter, after which the NLL released their official statement, which can be found on their website:


The National Lacrosse League (NLL) has been negotiating with the Professional Lacrosse Players Association (PLPA), which is the exclusive bargaining agent for our players.  We have always comported ourselves in a professional, above board and good faith manner.

We must create a partnership for growth with the players, but we believe we must grow together with a strategy that fits within a reasonable business model.    A guaranteed 400% increase in expenses without a corresponding guaranteed revenue increase is not something as stewards of the league we can responsibly agree to.

We have put a very good and fair offer on the table, which includes a 25% increase in salary and benefits for the players. It is a significant improvement from where the players were at the beginning of their last employment agreement and a testament to our ownership’s commitment to continue to invest heavily in our sport and grow the League.

In order to address the concerns expressed by our players that they not be left behind as the League grows, as well as our owners’ desire to share in lacrosse related revenues, including team generated revenues such as parking, food and beverage and merchandise concessions, the League has proposed a fair calculation of bonuses to be paid to the players.  It is based on attendance growth plus a percentage increase each year to account for growth in all attendance related revenue streams. That, combined with the fact that the players already receive a percentage share of all League revenues including national sponsorships, television, expansion (which no other league shares with their players) and even payments for an All Star Game (regardless of whether an All Star game is even played), we believe the current offer on the table is extremely fair and generous, especially when one considers how far the League has come in the short 35 months since the owners invested in the League and brought in new management.

For the good of everyone including players, owners and our fans, we are attempting to run the League as a business so that its long-term health and success is assured.  We have seen steady, but only incremental success. This nascent growth will only continue if ownership, management and players all work together to achieve it.

So, we must now come together. Ours is a long-term responsibility and task to make the National Lacrosse League the preeminent league of choice that will propel the world’s best lacrosse players to new levels of brand recognition and relevance. We, along with the players, have built a strong foundation to position the sport for continued success, but the work must continue in a realistic fashion. As stewards of the League, we must remain fiscally responsible and employ a business model focused on continued growth for the success of all involved, including the players today and the players in the future.

At this point, we are extremely disappointed that we have not reached a fair and equitable agreement for both the NLL and the players.

The PLPA has instructed its players not to attend training camps or submit to physicals. The players have in fact followed these instructions which has made it impossible for the teams to form rosters or otherwise operate.  Therefore, we reluctantly have no choice except to cancel the first two weekends of the 2018-19 season, December 1 and December 8, 2018.  We will provide any further communication on the 2018-19 schedule as updates become available.

We continue to be available and open to meet with the PLPA to resolve this issue in earnest and hope we can get back to playing lacrosse and providing you, the fans, the best entertainment experience in professional sports. Thank you for your patience.

Needless to say, fans were not happy about the announcement. Tweets came from far and wide across the North America from upset fans who were hoping for the league to start their 2018-2019 season on time. Some even went as far as to call out the NLL’s commissioner Nick Sakiewicz.

Others were more speculative about what it meant for the future of the league.

Most Twitter users sided with the players.

However, an unverified Twitter account labeled as Vancouver Stealth Defense/Transition player Andrew Suitor wasn’t in favor of the PLPA’s tactics.

One person mentioned cancelling their season tickets and waiting until the Premier Lacrosse League begins next year.

There was, however, one response that was a bit more lighthearted.

How do you feel about the NLL season being cancelled? Tag us on Twitter @laxallstars, or sound off in the comments!