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Friday, December 7, 2012
NHL won't reach out to union

Associated Press

NEW YORK --  NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said Friday that he is out of ideas on how to get negotiations back on track to save the hockey season.

Talks fell apart on Thursday night amid back-and-forth accusations, and the fallout was still being felt Friday. The two sides had no contact with each other on the 83rd day of the owners' lockout of players.

"I have no reason, nor any intention, of reaching out to the union right now," Daly said in an email to The Associated Press. "I have no new ideas. Maybe they do. We are happy to listen."

If the players do have a suggestion, they haven't offered it yet. Their most recent proposal was turned down quickly on Thursday by the NHL, which wanted a yes or no answer on three specific conditions the league said were non-negotiable. When the union tried to bargain the points, the meeting ended abruptly.

That has left the NHL's labor situation in limbo.

"We spent much of Thursday evening and Friday updating players on what happened the last few days," players' association special counsel Steve Fehr said Friday. "The differences between us have been narrowed significantly and hopefully we will find a way to bridge the remaining gap very soon."

All games have been canceled through Dec. 14, which is only a week away, so more games will surely be wiped off the schedule soon. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Thursday that he won't allow a season to be played that contains fewer than 48 games per team -- the length of the season that was played after a lockout ended in January 1995.