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Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Breaking down the league's proposal

By Pierre LeBrun

TORONTO -- So what’s next?

The NHL Players’ Association will be in communication via phone with the NHL on Wednesday to seek clarification/question on a number of fronts from the NHL’s surprise offer on Tuesday.

They will then meet on Thursday in Toronto.

The NHLPA’s reaction and eventual counter-proposal will be crucial to whether or not there’s going to be a resolution. My sense is that the league is willing to tweak some things, yes, but if the NHLPA comes back hard with an ultra-aggressive counter-proposal, some owners may want the league to walk away and enter a deep freeze.

I believe there’s going to be a deal, but how the NHLPA responds to the league’s offer is the biggest single moment in this entire negotiation.

Meanwhile, to further our news story on the site, here are more details from the NHL’s offer, which is six years in length with an option year for a seventh:

We shall see.

Either way, the pressure is on the NHLPA now. I believe Gary Bettman moved more in this offer than he really would have wanted to, owners urging the league to move in an attempt to save a whole season.

Tick tock.