After canceling all games through November first last Friday amid a breakdown of negotiations between the owners and NHLPA, the NHL is expected to cancel another slate of games if a deal is not struck by Thursday (Oct. 25), thus eliminating the possibility for a full season. According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, in order for a full slate of games to be played, the season must start by November 2nd:
NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly told the Los Angeles Times on Friday the league’s offer to the NHLPA remains in effect but said no additional negotiations had been scheduled. That offer stipulated a written collective bargaining agreement must be in place by Thursday for a full season to begin Nov. 2. Missed games would be inserted into the calendar and the schedule would be extended about two weeks.
After rejecting the newest NHL offer last Friday (which called for an immediate 50-50 revenue split), the NHLPA presented multiple counter-proposals to the owners, which Gary Bettman described as “in many ways a step backward”. The main sticking point for the players is the immediate move to a 50-50 split instead of a gradual reduction in player revenues from the current 55 percent to 50 percent over the life of a new CBA.
Talks are expected to heat up again this weekend in New York, but if there is no major progress by the end of the work week, expect more cancellations and a shortened season (if there is one).