- Craig Custance
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On Tuesday, a small group of NHL owners and players will meet to try to find a breakthrough in CBA talks without the presence of NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr.
On Wednesday, those six owners will join the rest of the board of governors for their meeting in New York, where the fate of the season could very well be decided if no progress is made.
As for the players, a Tuesday meeting without progress would push them closer to a step they've so far managed to delay: decertification.
They're not there yet, but they're getting closer.
"I think they're a lot closer to Armageddon than they ever were during the last lockout," said a veteran agent who requested anonymity.
Make no mistake, a full-on decertification would be Armageddon. Although it might not be necessary.