NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said at today’s league meeting that he does not believe the lockout will extend so long that it forces games to be canceled, emphasizing that he hopes for a return to the negotiating table to bring the work stoppage to an end.
“We are certainly planning on having a full season,” Goodell said. “That’s our objective and we’re going to work as hard as we can to make that become a reality.”
Calling the labor dispute the primary focus of the owners’ meeting, Goodell said the owners believe a deal can and should get done before it would risk shortening or even canceling the season.
“The owners want to play a full season,” Goodell said. “I think the players want to play a full season and I know our fans do.”
Goodell even claimed that the decision of 31 teams to require season-ticket payments before the lockout ends as evidence that the teams are preparing for the season to start.
“Very simple: We’re getting prepared to play the 2011 season,” Goodell said. “We’ve identified policies for refunds if that’s necessary.”
But Goodell is telling fans that he doesn’t expect them to have to get those ticket refunds. He’ll be in for a serious fan backlash if he’s wrong.