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59° Good Afternoon

Tipping point for NHL, NHLPA

NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr reacts

NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr reacts to a journalist's question at a news conference following collective bargaining talks in Toronto. (Oct. 18, 2012) Photo Credit: AP

That's what the next 24-48 hours are in the hunt for a new collective bargaining agreement, I'm told.

If you've been following along during the last few months, which has been an arduous exercise for those only interested in the entertainment value of the game, the two warring factions are meeting today for the third consecutive day under a cloak of silence. Major issues such as the make-whole provision on players existing contracts, term limits, and revenue-sharing are on the docket.

Few are willing to express any definite optimism on the momentum in having consecutive face to face discussions.

Nor is anyone willing to discuss publicy the inside and outside pressures on the negotiators.  Again, if you've been following here (and I don't refer back to this blog on every single tweet, I just figure many of you readers are checking in daily), we've long ago said that sponsors and networks and some owners and players have been quietly lobbying to cut the best deal possible as soon as possible.

Which by the way, is the only way complex negotiations like these conclude. Rarely does every single person involved get what they want: It's the reality of compromise. No clean sweep. You move on....Both sides are going to get plenty of dough out of this---if they can nail it down and salvage a shortened season.





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