September 13, 2012; New York, NY, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman speaks during a press conference at the Crowne Plaza Times Square. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE

NHL Lockout Update: Federal Mediator to Help Two Sides Come to Terms

At this point, you might be thinking, “Why the hell not?”

It has been 72 long days since the NHL locked out its players, and it seems as if there has been absolutely no progress made between the two sides to negotiate a deal.

So on Monday, the NHL and NHLPA agreed to the use of a federal mediator in hopes of ending the lockout.

“While we have no particular level of expectation going into this process, we welcome a new approach in trying to reach a resolution of the ongoing labor dispute at the earliest possible date,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said in a statement. “We have no further comment on the upcoming meetings at the current time.”

NHLPA executive director Don Fehr had this to say: “We look forward to their involvement as we continue working to reach an equitable agreement for both the players and the owners.”

Both the NBA and NFL used mediators to facilitate a deal in their recent lockouts, so let’s hope that the same success can be achieved in the NHL. If this doesn’t work, the players’ association may take the drastic measure of decertifying the union in order to force a deal to be made.

The league has already canceled all games through December 14, as well as the Winter Classic and All-Star Game.


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