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Report: NHL labour talks to resume Saturday

Executive director of the NHLPA, Donald Fehr, surrounded by NHL players, talks to the media in...

Executive director of the NHLPA, Donald Fehr, surrounded by NHL players, talks to the media in Toronto on Oct. 18, the last time the two sides spoke. (CRAIG ROBERTSON, QMI Agency)

LANCE HORNBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:49 PM ET

On the same day the NHL killed the Winter Classic, a revival of face-to-face collective bargaining discussions looks like a go.

Phone conversations during the week between deputy commissioner Bill Daly and special counsel Steve Fehr from the Players' Association have paved the way to a resumption of talks.

ESPN reported the pair will meet Saturday at an undisclosed location.

Multiple reports late Friday said the league might be willing to share some or all of the controversial 'Make Whole' provision in the owners' last offer. Make Whole was the plan to reimburse players from a salary rollback in year one of a new CBA from their current 57% share of HRR.

But the players saw it as a ploy to pay them off with their own piece of future profits. They already believe they conceded too much in the last CBA with a 24% rollback and have thus far rejected the idea of a 50-50 split, at least under the league's terms.

But even if the owners are in more of a giving mood now with Make Whole, many details have to be worked out on HRR and other problem areas.

There have been no direct negotiations since Oct. 18, when the league quickly turned down three union counter-proposals. That led to a complete shutdown of talks and some of the most scathing criticism traded by the foes.

 


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