The Philadelphia Wings are scheduled to start their new expansion season one month from today with a home game against the Buffalo Bandits at the Wells Fargo Center.

The key phrase in that sentence is “scheduled to start,” because the National Lacrosse League season is going to be delayed due to ongoing collective bargaining negotiations with the Professional Lacrosse Players Association.

It’s gotten testy at times:

The deadline that NLL commissioner Nick Sakiewicz mentioned came and passed. But the first two weeks of the season were not cancelled as the league originally suspended their 5 PM deadline as conversations with the PLPA continued.

However, after reportedly exchanging proposals and counter proposals throughout the day, the first two weeks of the season will be cancelled after all.

Via NLL press release:

The League suspended its 5:00pm deadline yesterday to allow the PLPA to provide a new counterproposal. After a thorough review of the PLPA’s counterproposal, it is clear we cannot accept the terms the PLPA has put forward, and therefore, have made a decision to reject it. We believe those terms would have both short and long term negative consequences on our member clubs and the League which we are not willing to accept. Therefore, there is not yet an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement.

With respect to the upcoming season, the PLPA has instructed its players not to attend training camps or submit to physicals, making the formation of rosters and operation of the opening of the season impossible.

Therefore, and regrettably, because of the PLPA’s current position, the first two weekends of the 2018-19 season, which includes games on December 1 and December 8, 2018, are cancelled.

We will provide further communications on the 2018-19 schedule as updates become available.

More after the jump:

Right now, the Wings aren’t affected. The regular season starts December 1, but the first Wings game isn’t until December 15. We’re getting to a point where the team’s return might get delayed.

I don’t know how many people will actually pay attention to the Wings if their season isn’t affected by a lockout. The Sixers just got Jimmy Butler and will be the talk of the town for most of the winter and spring. The Eagles will always get coverage even if they lose the rest of the year. The Flyers might be decent enough to somehow make the playoffs again, while the Phillies haven’t signed Bryce Harper yet. Plus, college hoops.

My guess is the Wings will fall between the Union and the Soul in terms of attention and popularity. But unlike those two teams, the Wings won’t have any games on TV as of now. The NLL has a partnership with Bleacher Report to stream their games on B/R Live, Bleacher Report’s version of ESPN+. The Union can be seen on PHL17 or ESPN and FOX during the season and the Soul have their games on NBC Sports Philadelphia + with a 97.5 the Fanatic radio broadcast. Other than B/R Live, the Wings have nothing.

If the lockout lingers longer, it’ll be a long road to recovery for the league. Casual fans that might have been interested because the Wings were coming back might be lost. We saw what happened with the lockouts in the NHL. It’s not easy to bounce back from, especially with a league like the NLL.