NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 13: Commissioner Gary Bettman of the National Hockey League speaks to the media at Crowne Plaza Times Square on September 13, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The NHL and the NHL Players' Association aren't talking just hours before a deadline that will force a work stoppage.
The Saturday deadline for a new collective bargaining agreement set by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman is fast approaching. At midnight, the league will lock out all the players if they cannot come to an agreement with the NHL Players' Association. Still, there's a sizable lack of urgency from either side, as Reuters.com reports that the sides aren't presently talking.
The two sides, who had been meeting in New York this week, contacted each other early on Saturday but with no movement from the league or union there was nothing to spark last-ditch talks.
Just hours away from the deadline, you might think that they'd be talking, but it appears that both sides know that nothing would get done. There's $3.3 billion in revenue to split, which is a league record set last season. The league is enjoying success that they have never seen before, so, naturally, a fourth work stoppage in 20 years is a distinct possibility.
According to Reuters, the numbers break down like this: the NHL wanted the players to cut their share down from 57 percent to 43 percent. Once they realized that wasn't even close, they came back with a six-year deal that started at 49 percent and slowly drops to 47 percent. The NHLPA came back with a deal that has the players getting 54.3 percent initially, and ending with 52.7 percent.
Small numbers when broken down like that, but it's representing big money, and neither side appears to be budging.