PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 22: Mark Messier of the New York Rangers signs autographs during Round One of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft at Consol Energy Center on June 22, 2012 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Yet another day with no drastic changes in negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement, which is set to expire on September 15th, 2012. Team have begun their initial preparations for the ever dreaded lockout, and it seems like we will be in for quite the roller coaster ride.
Donald Fehr spoke with the media once again today, and noted that there have been no "developments in bargaining" since the NHL and NHLPA met yesterday afternoon. At this point in time, as much as I would like to optimistic, it's almost impossible. The players have made various sacrifices in an attempt to sway the owners, but they are not budging from their strict offer(s). As Fehr stated earlier today, these negations have to be a "shared sacrifice". Something that isn't taking place at the moment.
Even with days remaining before the expiration, neither side is showing the urgency or the willpower to get a deal done. Both sides state how they want to get a deal done as quickly as possible, but they're not willing to talk. You simply can't get a deal done without putting effort in, it just doesn't work. One may suspect the NHL had a lockout planned all along, in order to try and force the NHLPA's hand once again.
However you look at it, this definitely isn't the news us fans and everyone else around the NHL were expecting to hear. This pending lockout not only hurts the fans and the players, but also everyone who works in the arena's for a living. There is quite a lot at stake here.