Report: NHL and Players Reach New Labor Deal

NHL, Players Deny Report of New Labor Deal (AP – WaPo)

The NHL and the players’ association are closing in on a new collective bargaining agreement, but both sides denied a report Thursday that a deal had been reached. The Los Angeles Times reported that the sides had completed negotiations to end the lockout that wiped out all of last season. But the league and the union said that is premature. “The report is inaccurate,” players’ association spokesman Jonathan Weatherdon said.

The league and the union have been at the bargaining table every week for the past few months and have indicated they are close to a deal. The sides resumed negotiations in New York on Monday, and those talks continued Thursday. “The media report that the NHL and the NHLPA have an agreement in principle is simply not true,” Bernadette Mansur, the NHL vice president of communications, said in an e-mail statement.

The newspaper, citing anonymous sources close to the negotiations, said the agreement would feature a hard salary cap linked to 54 percent of league revenue, a 24 percent rollback of existing contracts and qualifying offers. It would also include a provision that would limit the salary of any player to 20 percent of the team cap figure in any season. The salary cap would be $37 million and wouldn’t include medical and dental benefits and pension payments, the Times reported.

Given that I watched exactly as many NHL games this past season as in the several previous seasons, I’m happy either way.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.