MONTREAL, Sept. 10 (UPI) -- The NHL players union said Monday it filed actions in Canadian provinces seeking to prevent an owners' lockout when the current labor deal expires.
Josh Gorges, a defenseman with the Montreal Canadiens, said players from the team have filed an appeal with the Quebec Labor Board to seeking to prevent a lockout should a Sept. 15 deadline for a new collective bargaining agreement not be met.
"As players we want to play. More than anything, the desire to play is what's guiding us," Gorges told ESPN. "The owners, on the other hand, seem determined to impose a lockout. And so the players are going to use every tool at our disposal to stop them. Nothing is more destructive to bargaining than a lockout."
The NHLPA also filed a similar challenge last week with the Alberta Labor Relations Board seeking to prevent lockouts of the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers.
Formal discussions over a new labor deal broke down Aug. 31, although lines of communication between the two sides have remained open since then.
NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly told ESPN the filings were "inconsequential other than to impede and delay bargaining process."