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Depth player: We were ready to play when Fehr told us to hold out

Dec 6, 2012, 11:02 PM EDT

Donald Fehr AP

On Tuesday, when the players and owners met without NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr, there seemed to be a sense of optimism about the talks, at least based on Bettman’s and the owner’s recent statements.

Then the mood quickly changed and now one player seems to be blaming Fehr.

“We were ready to play again,” the player said, according to Denver Post and SI.com writer Adrian Dater. “But Don came in (Wed.) and told us we could get more and to hold out.”

Dater asserted that the source was a depth player. He further claimed that there are more like him, but the top players are still siding with Fehr.

“Bottom line here: Players say they are unified, but not what I’m hearing from this depth player,” Dater said. “They’ll deny that publicly, but privately, they are feeling powerless as the Ryan Millers and Brad Richards of the world pretend this is a sacrifice for them.”

Logan Couture was quick to voice his “100% agreement” with Fehr following tonight’s events.

This anonymous player’s remarks are rare, but not groundbreaking.

Michal Neuvirth previously argued that “this lockout is not about majority of players, I think. It is about several superstars with big contracts.”

His statements led to a backlash from his fellow players and Neuvirth later apologized.

Related:

Owners react to roller coaster week of CBA talks

Bettman: “We’re at a loss to explain what happened” (updated with video)

Not good enough: NHL rejects latest NHLPA offer

CBA meeting ends quickly, NHL to meet internally

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