Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 01/04/13 at 03:54 AM ET
from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press,
A veteran member of the NHL’s board of governors says commissioner Gary Bettman is prepared to cancel the season on Thursday if a deal has not been reached or appears to be imminent.
The chill that has settled on NHL labour negotiations is all part of a Don Fehr plan to push commissioner Bettman into a corner for one last squeeze and there could be unfortunate circumstances for hockey fans, said the governor who requested anonymity.
The league believes Fehr is unwilling to do a deal until after Bettman has cancelled the NHL season and the union leader is now slowing the process one last time to increase pressure on the commissioner, said the governor late Thursday night.
Such a gambit could be put to the test as early as next Thursday and the governor said it will come up empty for the players and finally the fans.
If the NHL and NHLPA cannot come to a settlement and sign a new collective bargaining agreement by Thursday of next week, Bettman will announce the cancellation of the 2012-13 season.
The governor theorized Fehr will then let things sit for a day or two before trying to leverage Bettman one more time into signing a deal viewed as better for the players.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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