In what comes as no surprise, the Capitals have canceled Thursday’s rookie game against the Philadelphia Flyers because of the NHL lockout.

This is the first of what will likely be several key dates that fall by the wayside in the upcoming weeks, unless the NHL and NHLPA quickly find a way to bridge a wide gap to reach a new collective bargaining agreement. At this point, though, that seems unlikely, given that the two sides have not held formal negotiations since Sept. 12.

Here are some of the important dates coming up:
— Sept 21: veterans report to training camp
— Sept. 25: Caps’ first preseason game vs. Bruins
— Sept. 26: Baltimore Hockey Classic featuring the Caps vs. Blue Jackets
— Oct. 11: NHL regular season slated to start
— Oct. 12: Caps’ season opener scheduled vs. Devils

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