Bargaining continues this morning at 9 a.m. CT in New York when the NHL Players' Association is expected to make some sort of proposal to the National Hockey League.
Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly has said he had no expectations, but the league made clear to the union on Monday night that it wanted to see a first full, formal proposal from the union. The league has made clear that any guaranteed, fixed share at this point would be unacceptable due to the damage that has occurred in the league due to the lockout.
We'll see where this goes. Obviously, because of the way this process has gone to this point, there's not a lot of optimism in the air. But, let's wait and see if the NHL is receptive and begins a give-and-take compromise.
In the meantime, at some point in the very near future, the NHL is expected to cancel games the first two weeks of December and the January All-Star Game in Columbus.
At some point, the NHL is going to have to float some sort of drop-dead date. Even Blackhawks defenseman Steve Montador, very involved in negotiations as a member of the NHLPA negotiating committee, told the Chicago Tribune yesterday that he didn't know if the union would be giving an actual proposal and that we're not close to the season being canceled.
Too many people believe that the drop dead date isn't until Feb. 16 because the 2004-05 season wasn't canceled until Feb. 16. I am led to believe this season will be in jeopardy a lot sooner, and as I diagramed last Friday, the math equation gets more difficult to solve every ticking day because of the impossible-to-calculate accurately lost revenue the NHL is enduring.
A deal needs to be made soon.
I will be keeping one eye on negotiations today, but I'm also covering Gophers availability early this afternoon. So, I'll be back later, but pay attention to my Twitter as well at russostrib.