I don't know how many people saw this, but it was buried in the description of the game:
EA MAY RETIRE ONLINE FEATURES AFTER 30 DAYS NOTICE POSTED ON www.ea.com OR 30 DAYS AFTER THE LAST DAY OF THE 2008- 2009 NHL SEASON.
(from here http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-CA/ga...=0&sb=1#offers
So, 30 days after Lord Stanley's cup has been claimed by the winning team, online play for this game is potentially dead in the water.
Way to go EA, another title to add to your winning record of supporting online features in the games that you publish.