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NHL lockout: Sides have 'frank exchange of views' on hockey revenue

By Adam Gretz | Hockey writer
NHL talks continued on Saturday, this time talking about hockey-related revenue. (U.S. Presswire)

For the second consecutive day the NHL and NHLPA met in New York in an effort to work out a new collective bargaining agreement. After focusing most of Friday on several key secondary issues like drug testing and player safety, the discussion on Saturday at least seemed to shift back to the biggest issue still separating the two sides -- the split of hockey-related revenue.

While neither side made a new proposal, and it doesn't appear percentages of revenue were discussed, NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr said that the two sides had a "frank exchange of views" on the definition of hockey-related revenue. And that's at least something.

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Along with coming to an agreement on how that revenue should be split among the teams and players, the sides also have had different views on what that hockey-revenue pot consists of. Before they can agree on how to divide it, they first must agree on what exactly they're going to be dividing.

In the last CBA, which expired on Sept. 15, the players received 57 percent of the revenue split.

Fehr added, via Dan Rosen of NHL.com, that it's positive the two sides are talking but it has been a "very up-and-down process."

The most positive development on Saturday wasn't just that the sides were still talking and will continue to do so on Sunday, but that they focused, at least in some small part, on the biggest issue still remaining. Hockey won't start again until the revenue split is agreed upon, and they won't agree until they actually start talking about it.

Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA leader Donald Fehr had their own one-on-one meeting on Saturday and could meet individually again on Sunday.

"I spent a few minutes with Gary talking about the overall situation, and we agreed to keep in touch," said Fehr on Saturday via the Associated Press.

"I am not going to talk about the specifics but, in general, we're trying to discuss how do we find a way to make an agreement. How do we bridge the gap on the major issues that are between us?"

This weekend was the first time the sides sat down in more than two weeks since the lockout began.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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