Mediator Scot Beckenbaugh met separately with the NHL and NHL Players Association on Friday in New York. This comes on the heels of a bit of a breakdown on Thursday when the NHLPA accused the owners of trying to pull a fast one by slipping some contentious proposals into the negotiations tied to how “hockey related revenues” are calculated. That, in turn, would impact on the amount of revenue that would be shared between the owners and players assuming a new collective agreement was ultimately reached.
The NHL has set Jan. 11 as the deadline for the dispute to be resolved if there is to be a season in 2013. It would be an abbreviated one, consisting of 48 games starting Jan. 19 with the playoffs likely running to the end of June. But a lot of work still needs to be done if an agreement is to be hammered out by then. Some of the more contentious issues include a second year salary cap (the NHL wants it to be $60 million, while the NHLPA is pushing for $65 million), pensions and length of contracts.
The NHLPA is also still flirting with the idea of disbanding the union (formally called a “disclaimer of interest”) which would open the door for individual players to file anti-trust lawsuits against the NHL. Here’s the TSN report.