Every now and then a story comes along that sparks a sense of optimism and makes people hopeful that the lockout might finally be reaching its conclusion.
This isn’t one of them.
While it’s still entirely possible that the lockout will end soon, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly didn’t exactly give optimists a whole lot to latch onto in his recent e-mail to CSNPhilly.
“They have given us no indication they think we are close on economics,” Daly said, referring of course to the NHLPA.
“Maybe you can explain to me how close we are when the union’s last offer requested a ‘guarantee’ of players’ share dollars in excess of $1.9 billion — and a guarantee going up in subsequent years — and we are offering 50% of HRR this year in an environment where we estimate damage to the business of at least $400 million — to this point?
“Their latest offer would have players making 65% of HRR for this year. It’s a funny definition of being ‘close’.”
Update: Steve Fehr’s spokesman said that Daly’s remarks weren’t “accurate.” The union wants to focus on coming to an agreement on an overall system before dealing with the 2012-13 campaign specifically and how to handle the financial losses that this lockout has caused.
They say it’s always darkest before the dawn. Both sides have said a lot of discouraging things over the course of this lockout, but they’ve also had marathon negotiating sessions and have shown signs of progress at various times.
One day these two sides will come to an agreement and they still have a fair amount of time if they want to save this season.