NHLPA rep Steve Fehr released a statement explaining why the players didn’t conduct a zero-hour formal meeting with the NHL today.
“Today we suggested that the parties meet in advance of the owners’ self-imposed deadline of midnight tonight. Don Fehr, myself and several players on the Negotiating Committee were in the city and prepared to meet. The NHL said that it saw no purpose in having a formal meeting. There have been and continue to be private, informal discussions between representatives of both sides.” – Fehr via Liz Mullen.
Many will key on the “no purpose” line as tonight’s deadline approaches.
As you may recall, the owners accused the players of passing on a negotiating session last weekend, so the PR scuffle continues.
In the mean time, teams are scurrying to sign players to contract extensions according to the soon-to-expire CBA guidelines, although many high-profile RFAs are willing to wait things out.