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Fans, St. Paul Mayor Reacts To End Of NHL Lockout

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ST. PAUL (WCCO/AP) — After 113 days, the NHL lockout apprears to be over. The news comes after a marathon negotiating session that lasted more than 16 hours.

WCCO-TV’s Mark Rosen said the details of the plan still remain to be seen but for Minnesota Wild fans, they’re anxious to see what Ryan Suter and Zach Parise have in store.

“It’s good to have it over,” said Rob Linder. “I think they could have figured it out earlier. Both sides had to stand their ground. It’s good for the community, good for St. Paul. St. Paul needed it to get started again. It’s just good to have them back.”

Gabriel Adams agrees, saying he can’t wait to watch the Wild in action.

“I love watching the Wild and I haven’t had the opportunity to watch them in a long time so I’m really happy,” he said.

Businesses around the Xcel Center are also glad there’s a deal on the table.

Some companies say they’ve loss 50 percent of their business during the lockout.

“We’re glad here. We really felt it this year,” said Mary Kiritschenko, of Mickey’s Diner. “I didn’t think we would but we really felt it. And the problem with the lockout is, they couldn’t fill it with anything else there, like concerts or anything else. So the lockout is really important to our evening shifts.”

Manager of Sakura, Laurie Malmgren, says they’re ready for the crowds to return as soon as play resumes. She says they’ll have the space and the products to serve.

Hockey fan Tricia Ewy was wearing a Wild jersey in celebration as she arrived for lunch Sunday. The 22-year-old St. Paul Park woman says hockey is one of the biggest parts of her life. And while Ewy hasn’t been to a Wild game for a few seasons she’s now eager to see them take the ice in person.

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman issued the following statement after news broke regarding the lockout:

“After months of discussions that seemed to go nowhere, the NHL players and NHL owners have finally come together to save what is left of the 2013 season. Fundamentally, the end of the lockout means business owners in or near the Xcel Energy Center can get back to doing what they do best – supporting the fans of the Minnesota Wild. We know this lockout has had a profound effect on business owners and workers in Saint Paul and our community is thrilled the players and the owners have reached an agreement. Let’s play hockey!”

The Minnesota Wild won’t make an official statement until the CBA is ratified, according to officials.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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