WINNIPEG — The machinations towards a possible new labour agreement for the NHL continue and the fact that few details have been revealed about the specifics of bargaining between league and the NHL Players Association is just fine with some players.
"I’d have to say I wouldn’t be able to fill you in with much more information, either," Winnipeg Jets centre Jim Slater said this morning after another workout at the MTS Iceplex with some teammates and fellow locked-out NHLers. "It’s been pretty quiet and we were up early this morning and nothing’s been reported since last night.
"Maybe when we go back later we’ll get an update. But just hearing so far through different sources that they’ve been talking for a while and that’s been good."
Slater said that the continuation of talks and the coming and going of Wednesday’s self-imposed deadline for the NHLPA to file a disclaimer of interest for the union — even though another vote among players may be coming soon — were positive developments.
"Definitely a good sign," he said about Wednesday. "I think this whole process the last couple of days has been good. There has been some movement on both sides and that’s a positive for sure."
Winnipegger Colin Wilson of the Nashville Predators saw the virtual news blackout in recent days as a sure sign of progress.
"It seems like there a few, a couple of issues," he said. "But I don’t have that much of an insight right now. They’re trying to keep those memos a little bit vague just to make sure nothing’s leaked and I really like what they’re doing with the media right now.
"Neither side is coming out telling what the other side is doing. So it’s showing that it’s not a media battle any more, just trying to get a deal done."
NHL players have been locked out since Sept. 15. Bargaining continues as the league has told the players a deal needs to be completed by late next week in order to salvage a 48-game season starting Jan. 19.