Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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NHL players, owners back at it today

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild off-season news Updated: December 5, 2012 - 9:51 AM


The 18 locked-out players and six NHL owners who met until midnight Eastern last night will be back at it today in New York City.

The sides gathered soon after 8 a.m. CT for internal meetings. At 10 a.m., the NHL is holding a Board of Governors meeting.

But it sounds like the two sides will meet again formally this afternoon after the meeting without Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr in the room. That is why it appears as if Bettman will now not hold his pre-announced news conference at noon CT.

That's a good thing. That means there's momentum that he doesn't want to risk dousing.

The NHLPA reportedly has a proposal to present, so it sounds like we are still very much in a give and take stage of this process.

Check out the previous blog, but the NHL and NHLPA held a brief, joint press scrum late last night in which NHLPA General Counsel Steve Fehr called it the "best day" of the process thus far.

This was a pretty positive symbolic moment. Typically meetings have ended throughout this process with the NHL and NHLPA meeting separately with the media and taking potshots at each other. As recent as last week, Steve Fehr and NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly did coinciding radio interviews on the Fan in Toronto where they took potshots at each other.

Now, they were standing side by side in front of an NHLPA backdrop saying both sides wanted to make a deal. It's clear the Pittsburgh Penguins, led by Sidney Crosby and his billionaire owner, Ron Birkle, have taken control of this process.

Basically, the tone and the mood have changed. Owners and players were seen conversing, players left smiling. etc.

Players had a very positive conference call between sessions. Owners will get their first real update during the very critical board meeting. To me, this is still delicate because we're all hearing optimism and progress, and yet Bettman and Donald Fehr haven't been in the room yet, proposals haven't formally gone back and forth and the owners are about to get their first update.

Again, lots of work to be done, but it sounds like both sides spent yesterday's meeting compromising, with the owners relenting on some of the contracting changes they were seeking.

So stay tuned, but at least both sides are working for the common good now. I'll be back on later, but it'll have to be after Gophers availability today. Will it be for the last time?


New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Oklahoma City
Orlando 7:00 PM
Boston 8:00 PM
Denver 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Army 35 2nd Half
American Univ 29
Wright State 33 2nd Half 20:00
Detroit 27
Syracuse 47 2nd Half 16:56
North Carolina 43
Cleveland State 31 2nd Half 16:28
Oakland 33
Delaware State 33 2nd Half 17:09
NC Central 29
High Point 31 2nd Half 20:00
Presbyterian 28
Howard 14 1st Half 10:30
Bethune-Cookman 16
Coppin State 3 1st Half 14:25
NC A&T 10
Nicholls 25 1st Half 2:23
Northwestern St 38
Hampton 21 1st Half 5:44
SC State 18
Gardner-Webb 1 1st Half 17:44
Campbell 4
MD-Eastern Shore 7:00 PM
Florida A&M
Stephen F Austin 7:00 PM
Central Arkansas 0 1st Half 20:00
New Orleans 0
Norfolk State 0 1st Half 20:00
Savannah State 0
TX A&M-CC 8 1st Half 15:20
SE Louisiana 5
Sam Houston St 7:00 PM
Abilene Christian
McNeese State 4 1st Half 15:40
Incarnate Word 5
Milwaukee 2 1st Half 15:59
Valparaiso 12
Alcorn State 7:30 PM
Alabama A&M
Southern U 7:30 PM
Alabama State
Prairie View 8:00 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Texas 8:00 PM
Iowa State
Texas Southern 8:00 PM
Miss Valley St
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 53 2nd Half 6:18
Alabama A&M 44
Southern U 50 2nd Half 5:54
Alabama State 40
Texas Southern 54 2nd Half 4:10
Miss Valley St 48
(12) Texas A&M 31 2nd Half 20:00
(1) South Carolina 39
Robert Morris 36 2nd Half 20:00
Mount St Marys 21
East Tenn St 39 2nd Half 15:38
Mercer 33
Wofford 34 2nd Half 16:18
Furman 30
Morehead St 27 2nd Half 20:00
Tenn Tech 24
Illinois 24 2nd Half 19:06
Michigan 39
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 8:00 PM
(15) Nebraska 8:00 PM
(20) Iowa
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