The National Hockey League closed its doors on Saturday night, locking out the players after the two sides failed to reach a new labor agreement. Don't worry about gassing up the Zamboni. The league won't be needing it for a while.

Unless common sense prevails, the opening of NHL training camps will be delayed, and the dispute between scrooges and skaters will likely wipe out at least part of the regular-season schedule. But this freeze-out could last a long time.

The latest lockout, the third in 18 years, completes the rat trick for NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. Under Bettman's watch, the NHL canceled 468 games and didn't begin the 1994-1995 season until Jan. 20.

I'm sick of lockouts.