The day after a federal appeals court agreed to the NFL's request for a full stay of the injunction that briefly lifted the lockout, owners and players left another round of court-ordered mediation without a new deal or tangible signs of progress in their ongoing labor disput.
Officials from both sides met with U.S. Magistrate Judge Arthur Boylan, who is mediating this round of talks, and will resume talks on June 7. That's four days after the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals will hold a hearing on the NFL's appeal of District Court Judge Susan Nelson's injunction that aimed to end the lockout, which is now more than two months old.
The Eight Circuit on Monday issued a full stay of the injunction until the appeal is decided, which is expected sometime in late June or early July.
The participants at this round of talks included NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith, Giants president and co-owner John Mara, Steelers owner Art Rooney II, and attorneys for both sides.
"We obviously hoped that the circuit would not grant the stay and that football would come back for our fans and our players," Smith said last night. "Right now, our guys are out there working out for free, because they dig the game. The case will be heard by the appellate court on June 3, we look forward to the argument. But look, this is something the players are prepared for. It's a disappointment, obviously."