TORONTO, Aug. 22 (UPI) -- A scheduled full-scale NHL collective bargaining session was canceled Wednesday after a smaller meeting was held earlier the in day, negotiators said.
The full-scale session between league owners and the NHL Players Association was set for 1 p.m. Wednesday in Toronto but was abruptly called off shortly before it was to begin, NHL.com reported.
The move came after a 2-hour meeting Wednesday morning that included just NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly, NHLPA Executive Director Donald Fehr and NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr.
Daly told the Web site the smaller session was held to "review where we are in the process," while Donald Fehr added the cancellation of the afternoon session was "an ordinary process in bargaining that happens."
Another full-scale bargaining session -- the first since Aug. 16 -- is scheduled for Thursday in Toronto.
The two sides are racing against a Sept. 15 deadline to reach a new labor contract. If no agreement is reached by that date, Bettman has said owners would lock players out of training camp.