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Flames owner once said cooperation was more important than trying to “haggle for the last dollar”

Nov 7, 2012, 3:30 PM EDT

Gary Bettman and Murray Edwards AP

NHL owners may not be allowed to comment on the lockout, but the Globe and Mail unearthed an interesting remark that billionaire oilman and Calgary Flames co-owner Murray Edward made all the way back in 1999 after striking a major deal with BP.

“It’s more important,” said Edwards, “to fly midpoint in deals and work together, than to try to haggle for the last dollar.”

Translation: the best deal is one that makes both sides happy.

Edwards is one of the more influential owners in the NHL and has been described by some as a hard-liner. Whether he’s applying the same “fly midpoint” philosophy to negotiations with the players isn’t clear.

For the sake of future relations between the NHL and NHLPA, hopefully somebody is, because the players have said repeatedly that they gave up a lot to end the last lockout, and there’s no doubt much bitterness remains from the cancelation of the 2004-05 season.

At some point (hopefully soon), both sides will have to start working together again to grow the game.

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