The NHL and NHLPA were supposed to reconvene on Wednesday and start their negotiations up again as they work toward a new Collective Bargaining Agreement as just 24 days remain before the current CBA expires.
Well, that's what they were supposed to do. But courtesy of Chris Johnston of the Canadian Press, we know that didn't actually happen.
I'm told CBA talks have been cancelled for the day. They're scheduled to resume in the morning.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) August 22, 2012
No reason was given why they were canceled. Maybe Gary Bettman had a 24-hour bug, who knows? Regardless, every day that passes without negotiations happening is just not good, not when we're already getting close to the lockout being on and the sides still having a "wide gulf."
Talks are scheduled to resume on Thursday morning at 10 a.m. ET in Toronto, so there is that. It would be nice if they made it a double-long session to make up for the missed day. Hey, if I had to make up for snow days in school, they can do a double session.
Even though the main meeting was canceled, that doesn't mean there was no meeting at all on Wednesday, though. Again from Johnston:
Just to update: Bettman/Daly/Fehrs held private meeting this morning. Scheduled CBA talks were then called off in the afternoon.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) August 22, 2012
That does add a little intrigue into what is going on. Again, one of them might have simply said they couldn't make a meeting later in the day for something simple. Or something might have happened. We'll likely never know. But at least there was something and it wasn't a completely wiped out day.
The bone that they did throw at least shed a little light.
Bill Daly says this morning's meeting was to chart a way forward in talks, NHLPA requested afternoon session be delayed until tomorrow.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) August 22, 2012
Right now the negotiations seem to be at a critical point. Each side has now laid out their visions for a new CBA and it's time for the NHLPA to get a meaningful response from the owners after their proposal. The coming meeting -- or perhaps the private one from Wednesday morning -- figure to set the tenor of the negotiations moving forward.