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Sides too close to call the season

Updated: February 15, 2005, 11:59 PM ET
By Scott Burnside | Special to ESPN.com

There is a special place in hockey hell for the National Hockey League and its players if they do not strike a deal. Now. Today.

Endless tape loops of mid-February tilts between the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Carolina Hurricanes, Don Cherry fashion shows and Jacques Martin postgame interviews, viewed for all eternity from the cramped Joe Louis Arena press box. That's what awaits these two factions if they cannot finish the startling work done under cover of darkness in Niagara Falls, N.Y., ...

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