RALEIGH — The Friesen 5K Fun Run wont be held this year, but founder Pete Friesen said its not because of uncertainty about a potential NHL lockout.
Friesen, head athletic trainer and conditioning coach for the Carolina Hurricanes, said Monday that the event held the past six years had become too big and required too much planning time. Friesen and his wife, Shelley, have annually organized the event that benefits the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of North Carolina.
"It has become a little too overwhelming for my wife and myself," Friesen said. "Weve devoted our whole summers to organizing it. Its for a great cause but has become a daunting task."
Friesen founded the event soon after the Hurricanes won the Stanley Cup in 2006, inviting Canes fans to help celebrate his day with the Cup that year. The 5k has hosted nearly 10,000 runners and raised more than $240,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
The NHLs collective bargaining agreement with the NHL Players Association expires Sept. 15. Negotiations on a new CBA are ongoing, and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has indicated there would be a lockout if a new CBA is not in place by Sept. 15.
"My decision (on the 5k) was not related at all to a potential lockout," Friesen said. "I really believe our players would support the cause and event whether there was a lockout or not."
Friesen said he hoped the 5k could be held in September 2013 with help from the Hurricanes and their promotions and community relations staff.