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Wednesday, June 1, 2005
Updated: June 2, 3:12 PM ET
Session was the 17th meeting since cancellation

ESPN.com news services

TORONTO – The NHL and the players' association held small-group discussions for more than 10 hours Wednesday, again working on a review of revenue measurement and financial reporting issues.

The meetings lasted from about 11 a.m. until approximately 9:30 p.m., and continued with a larger group Thursday as the sides tried to find common ground on team revenues and how to associate them to a salary cap in a new collective bargaining agreement.

Both sides have agreed that a salary cap model with an upper and lower limit will be the centerpiece of a new agreement, but have labored through the financial review in order to tie revenues to the moving cap figure.

The New York Post reported that the salary cap model will feature a range from a low believed to be approximately $24 million and a maximum between $36 million and $38 million.

Sources told the Los Angeles Times that other elements reportedly agreed upon include a reduced qualifying age for free agency to 20, then 29 and 28 for the final three years of a deal, and increasing the length of entry-level contracts from three to four years with a maximum signing bonus of $400,000.

Bill Daly, the league's chief legal officer, declined to comment about the meeting, saying in a statement that he wouldn't talk about any of the matters discussed until after Thursday's session. He also said rumors of an imminent agreement were "untrue."

Wednesday's session was the 17th meeting since the season was canceled Feb. 16.

Ted Saskin, senior director of the NHLPA, was joined in Wednesday's meetings by outside counsel John McCambridge, associate counsel Ian Pulver, players' executive committee president Trevor Linden and vice president Vincent Damphousse.

Bill Daly, the league's chief legal officer, represented the NHL along with Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs, outside counsel Bob Batterman, NHL general counsel David Zimmerman and lawyer Shep Goldfein.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, director of hockey operations Colin Campbell, New Jersey Devils CEO and general manager Lou Lamoriello, board of governors chairman Harley Hotchkiss of the Calgary Flames and Nashville Predators owner Craig Leipold are expected to join the discussions Thursday.

NHLPA executive director Bob Goodenow will also participate Thursday, along with Brendan Shanahan of the Detroit Red Wings.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.