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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

nhl- Uh Oh

from The Maven and MSG Network, The optimists took a stiff body check on Wednesday in the eternal NHL-NHLPA war.
The pessimists still have the lead.
And, as long as no new collective bargaining agreement is sealed the pessimists will prevail. That was the gist of Wednesday's events in Chicago.
Just when it appeared as if substantial traction was about to be made in settling hockey's civil war, the A -- as in agreement -- train grounded to a halt.
Based on the first of two days of meetings in the Windy City, the union appears in no rush to make a deal. Apparently NHLPA boss Bob Goodenow is continuing his stalling tactics on the assumption that his side has more leverage than the league.
"The players' association is acting as if it is in absolutely no rush," a negotiator tells me.
Most of Wednesday was consumed with accounting issues.
"It was totally uneventful," one participant tells me. "The issues we discussed could easily have been dealt with after we negotiated the more important ones."
Thursday's meeting is expected to be a continuation of the arithmetic lesson, leaving virtually no hope of a settlement by early June, as some had hoped.
At least one NHL negotiator is baffled by what he describes as the union's "laid-back" behavior.
“It’s not even about dollars anymore,” he insists, “and not about principles. Goodenow has agreed to every principle we need. I can't understand why he is dragging his feet."
Soundings from the union side have been less clear and less hopeful.
When a player agent suggested on Tuesday to an NHLPA attorney in Toronto that it appears as if the warring factions, at last, are en route to a deal, the unionist shot back, disparagingly, “Don’t be so sure!”...continue, but most of it is from the previous article by Stan.