Bill Daly hopes proposal was “a good step” in the right direction

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Gary Bettman’s right-hand man Bill Daly discussed the owners’ latest proposal with the media, expressing some optimism about a deal getting done.

ESPN’s Katie Strang collected some of Daly’s quotes, including additional use of the buzzword “meaningful.”

“We’re hopeful that it’s a meaningful proposal that we can continue to make progress from,” Daly said. “We feel like we made a good step in that direction earlier this week and we hope that they would take a step forward as well.”

Players such as Manny Malhotra questioned just how “meaningful” that proposal really was, though.

With all the discussions about terminology and semantics in mind, Daly promoted the league’s flexibility.

“We’re not married to the structure,” Daly said. “If it’s a good proposal and it takes a different route, we’re open to that.”

Daly acknowledged that “the clock is ticking” with September rapidly approaching.

“I would say the positive thing is that both parties are committed if there are reasons to meet, to continue to move forward, to meet as often as it takes to get it done,” Daly said. “But obviously every day that goes by, it’s less and less likely that we’ll be able to come to closure on all the issues we need to come to closure on.”