The NHL and the NHLPA met again yesterday for two separate occasions, once in the early afternoon for a hour to exchange proposals and again Wednesday night in a meeting that lasted for nearly 5 hours. What was critical about last night's exchange of ideas was that the NHLPA had until 11:59 PM to file their disclaimer of interest to the league which would basically disband the union and open the NHL to anti-trust lawsuits from the players.
Told sides are still meeting as of 12:03 p.m.— Tom Gulitti (@TGfireandice) January 3, 2013
Not much leaking out from the meeting room other than they're still in there talking. Seems to have been no mention of disclaimer.— Tom Gulitti (@TGfireandice) January 3, 2013
Critical in my opinion the disclaimer wasn't filed. Would've likely sent talks into a tailspin and hurt all chances for a hockey season to begin later this month.
When last night's meeting ended at 1 AM, Donald Fehr met with the hockey media first and was less than forthcoming with new information...
Fehr said a mediator was present at today's meetings.— Tom Gulitti (@TGfireandice) January 3, 2013
We later found out the mediator was requested to be in the room by both sides. Although mediation in the past has been less than successful, if it helps get the sides closer to a resolution, so be it...
Bettman talked to the media next and added little to what Fehr had to say.
Gary Bettman says mediator Scot Beckenbaugh asked sides to return here at 10 a.m. Thursday.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) January 3, 2013
Gary Bettman says the sides had "philosophical discussions" about why certain issues are important to each side.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) January 3, 2013
Finally serious negotiations... this is what we've been waiting for. Too bad this didn't happen months ago.
In addition, it was previously reported the NHLPA asked for a cap on escrow accounts, however as of last night it was widely reported that the NHLPA has not asked for this cap in recent proposals.
Finally, the last two hangups appear to be on player pension, to which Darren Dreger reported Thursday morning pension experts will be in on talks today and where to set the salary cap for the 2013-14 season, which the sides are reportedly only separated by $5 million. Certainly they aren't going to kill a season over this right??
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