The NHL continued to play Scrooge as it canceled two more weeks of games Thursday because of its labor war with the players.

The league has now erased nearly 51 percent of the season, and the Flyers have had 41 games - exactly half of their schedule - canceled.

On Twitter, fans expressed their disgust.

Tweeted Flyer_Bully: "Good riddance. We're doing fine without you. Money better spent."

If a collective bargaining agreement is reached in the next two weeks, teams could play a 48-game season starting around Jan. 15. The sides haven't had any face-to-face negotiations in eight days.

On Friday, the NHL Players' Association is expected to release the results of its vote on whether to ask its executive board to file a "disclaimer of interest," which would dissolve the union and enable it to file an antitrust lawsuit, claiming the NHL's lockout is illegal. The players appear to be heavily in favor of the motion, and they have until Jan. 2 to file.

The NHL last week filed a preemptive lawsuit, hoping to get a federal court to rule the lockout, which reached its 96th day Thursday, is legal.

Including the preseason, the NHL has had nine announcements for scrapping blocks of games.

If an agreement isn't in place by around Jan. 5, the next announcement could be to cancel the season.

In 2004-05, the NHL became the first major professional sports league in North America to cancel an entire season. The league also had a lockout in 1994-95, a season in which teams played 48 games. In '95, a CBA was struck on Jan. 10 and the season started on Jan. 20.

Holmstrom surgery. Center Ben Holmstrom, the Adirondack Phantoms captain, had reconstructive surgery on the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee Thursday and will miss four to six months, said general manager Paul Holmgren. Phantoms defenseman Marc-Andre Bourdon had been sent to Philadelphia to be treated for a concussion, Holmgren said.

Contact Sam Carchidi at scarchidi@phillynews.com, or follow on Twitter @BroadStBull.