The NHL was still reviewing the NHLPAs latest proposal, one that looked to bridge the gap between the two parties, when the Blackhawks were wrapping up practice on Friday afternoon.
This is really our effort to save the season, Jamal Mayers said at the time. The reality is a lot of guys didnt want to go this far. But the hope is we can salvage a good chunk of the season if we can make a deal quickly here.
Jonathan Toews hoped it would lead to traction.
Both sides need to show desperation and lack of carelessness, I guess, is one way to put it. We have to show we want to get things done for each other and the fans, he said post practice. Well see how they react to it.
By midday on Friday, however, it looked like the league wasnt reacting very favorably to it.
There was no progress made on Friday, day 67 of the lockout, when the NHLPA offered a new five-year proposal to the league in New York. Some details of the latest proposal were in a memo from Fehr to the players, which was leaked to the media. In the memo, Fehr told players that it is now undisputed that the gap (between the league and PA) is only 182 million over five years.
Other details, according to the memo:
Honouring Players ContractsTransition payments: Players Share will equal 50 percent of HRR plus fixed payments in the first four years to partially honour player contracts and ease the transition to 5050:
2012-13 - 182M
2013-14 - 128M
2014-15 - 72M
2015-16 - 11M
The owners had previously proposed 211M
Long-term back-diving contracts Cap benefit recapture rule so clubs no longer benefit from front-loading contracts (move in the owners direction)
Contracts in the minors Clubs take a cap hit on contracts in the minors over 1M (move in the owners direction)
Four Recall Rule Unlimited recalls after regular season (move in the owners direction)
Salary Arbitration Elimination of walk-away from arbitrators decision, but clubs can still walk-away by not qualifying a player.
League commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters that the two sides were still far apart, yet offered some optimism.
Hopefully theres some momentum so we can bring this to a conclusion, he said.
The NHLPA planned to have a conference call with players later today. Fehr didnt sound quite as optimistic as he departed Fridays talks.
One of you is going to ask me what happens next, Fehr told reporters. And the answer is I don't know."