NHL owners, players swap proposals

Sept. 12, 2012 at 8:34 PM
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NEW YORK, Sept. 12 (UPI) -- NHL owners and the league's players association said Wednesday they swapped collective bargaining proposals as a deadline for a work stoppage loomed.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters at league offices in New York owners received a union proposal Wednesday morning, deemed it insufficient, then offered up a new package of their own, NHL.com reported.

The NHL chief said the latest proposal is a one-time-only offer that will be off the table after Saturday's expiration of the current labor contract, after which owners have threatened to lock players out of training camp.

"We decided that in the hopes of moving these negotiations along before the weekend that we would make yet another proposal, which we did," Bettman told NHL.com. "It had meaningful movement in it and it was an attempt to engage the union finally in trying to make a deal on economic main issues."

He confirmed that, like the league's earlier offers, it seeks to reduce players' absolute share of "hockey-related revenue" from its current 57 percent.

"It obviously has to be studied," NHL Players Association Executive Director Donald Fehr told NHL.com. "We hope they're going to be studying our proposal too.

"It is too early to say whether or not this will represent any meaningful progress. That remains to be seen."

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