Earlier today, reports ran rampant that the NHLPA was not only talking about a disclaimer of interest, it was taking steps to give its members the right to vote on whether or not the disclaimer should be filed with the league.
But by Friday evening, the league was taking its own steps.
The NHL filed a class-action complaint in federal court late this afternoon, seeking a declaration to confirm the ongoing lockout is legal.
Heres the statement released by the NHL:
Today, in response to information indicating that NHL Players have or will be asked to vote to authorize the National Hockey League Players Associations Executive Board to proceed to disclaim interest in continuing to represent the Players in collective bargaining, the National Hockey League filed a Class Action Complaint in Federal Court in New York seeking a Declaration confirming the ongoing legality of the lockout.
Simultaneously with the filing of its Complaint, the NHL also filed an Unfair Labor Practice Charge with the National Labor Relations Board alleging that by threatening to disclaim interest, the NHLPA has engaged in an unlawful subversion of the collective bargaining process and conduct that constitutes bad faith bargaining under the National Labor Relations Act.
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The NHLPA released its own statement:
The NHLPA has just received a copy of the National Labor Relations Board charge and has not yet been served with the lawsuit. However, based on what weve learned so far, the NHL appears to be arguing that Players should be stopped from even considering their right to decide whether or not to be represented by a union. We believe that their position is completely without merit.
Friday marked Day 89 of the NHL lockout. So far, games are canceled through Dec. 30. The two sides talked with mediators earlier this week, with little to no progress being made.