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NHL, union both want to resume negotiations, but will they?

Dec 17, 2012, 9:37 PM EDT

BillDaly

The CBA negotiations might be at a standstill right now, but the NHL is interested in getting them started again.

“We obviously would prefer that the Players return to the bargaining table at the earliest possible date to see if there is a deal to be done,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the Star Tribune’s Michael Russo.

“Ultimately, a deal will have to be agreed to, regardless of the forum. I suppose it is ultimately up to them to choose what forum that will be, but the Union pretending it’s not a Union anymore certainly isn’t going to expedite things.”

Daly is referring to the current players’ vote to potentially dissolve the union and form a professional trade association.

The 2011 NBA lockout ended quickly after the NBPA decided to dissolve into a trade association and some are hoping for a similar result here.

Meanwhile, NHLPA’s special counsel Steve Fehr took exception with the wording of Daly’s statement.

“There is no need for the players to ‘return’ to the table because the players have never left,” Fehr said. “It was the owners who indicated last Thursday that they had nothing more to say right now. We are ready to bargain whenever they are.”

So to summarize, both sides are ready and willing to bargain, but despite that there are no talks currently scheduled.

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