NHL

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Negotiations' long and winding road

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A chronological look back at the ongoing CBA negotiations between the NHL and NHL Players' Association:

Dec. 11 -- The NHL cancels regular-season games through Dec. 30, bringing the total number wiped away to 526. That represents 42.8 per cent of the season.

Dec. 6 -- After the NHLPA delivers a new proposal to the league, executive director Donald Fehr tells reporters a deal is imminent. He returns shortly after to say the NHL has rejected the offer and pulled its own off the table. A visibly angry commissioner Gary Bettman holds a lengthy news conference and scolds Fehr for raising hopes.

Dec. 5 -- The sides exchange new proposals and agree for the first time on the economic aspect of the deal: US$300 million in deferred payments and a 50-50 split of revenue. The NHL also drops proposed changes to unrestricted free agency, entry-level contracts and arbitration. The talks are tense and see a member from the NHL side tell players that bringing Donald Fehr back to the table could be a deal-breaker.

Dec. 4 -- Six owners and 18 players gather along with deputy commissioner Bill Daly and NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr. The meeting ends with Fehr telling reporters it was the "best day we've had."

Nov. 27-28 -- Mediators conclude they can't help the parties bridge the gap after two days of meetings.

Nov. 23 -- The NHL cancels regular-season games through Dec. 14 along with the Jan. 27 all-star game.

Nov. 21 -- The NHLPA tables a proposal that uses the same framework put forward by the league for the first time. The union offers a 50-50 split of revenues and asks for $393 million in deferred payments. The NHL rejects the proposal.

Nov. 6-9 -- The sides meet over four days but talks break down following a heated confrontation. During the course of meetings, the NHL proposes a 50-50 split of revenue along with $211 million in deferred payments to help ease the transition. The NHLPA asks for approximately $590 million to ensure all current contracts are honoured.

Nov. 2 -- The NHL cancels the Jan. 1 Winter Classic.

Oct. 26 -- The NHL cancels regular-season games through Nov. 30.

Oct. 25 -- The NHL withdraws its Oct. 16 offer after deadline passes to play a full 82-game schedule.

Oct. 19 -- The NHL cancels regular-season games through Nov. 1.

Oct. 18 -- The NHLPA responds with three proposals, all of which are dismissed by the league.

Oct. 16 -- The NHL tables a new offer in a bid to save an 82-game season. The deal calls for a 50-50 split of revenues. The league publishes the offer on its website.

Oct. 4 -- The NHL cancels the first two weeks of the regular season.

Sept. 27 -- The NHL cancels the remaining exhibition schedule.

Sept. 19 -- The NHL cancels exhibition games through Sept. 30.

Sept. 15 -- The collective bargaining agreement expires and the NHL triggers the lockout, its third in 20 years.

Sept. 13 -- NHL's board of governors unanimously approves enacting a lockout when CBA expires. Donald Fehr meets with 283 players.

Sept. 12 -- The sides exchange proposals with the lockout looming. The NHLPA keeps the first three years of its Aug. 14 offer and suggests the final two years be tied to league growth. The NHL counters with a deal that sees the players' share fall to 47 per cent from 49 per cent, although Bettman says it will be withdrawn if not accepted before Sept. 15.

Aug. 28 -- The NHL makes a counter-proposal. Using new definitions of hockey-related revenue, it sees the players' share in revenue fall to 46 per cent over the course of a six-year deal.

Aug. 14 -- The NHLPA makes its first offer, proposing an economic system delinked from revenues that starts with a salary cap of $69 million in 2012-13. It also asks for more revenue sharing between teams.

July 13 -- The NHL makes its first offer, asking for the players' share of hockey-related revenue to be reduced to 43 per cent from 57 per cent.

June 29 -- The sides meet for the first time.

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 11, 2012 C2

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