Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 12/03/12 at 12:04 PM ET
Today, Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun weigh the pros and cons of the NHL-NHLPA owners-players meeting scheduled for Tuesday. Bring it, fellas.
SCOTT BURNSIDE: Good day, my friend. Well, this promises to be an interesting -- dare we say seminal? -- week in the NHL, and the lockout that now approaches the three-month mark. The NHL’s board of governors meets in New York on Wednesday but first, on Tuesday, a group of NHL owners and select players will meet for a powwow, accepting commissioner Gary Bettman's suggestion he and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr step back after federal mediation fell apart after two days. Stunt? PR move? Or catalyst to a deal? We’ll find out soon enough but there are lots of questions about whether this will amount to anything. First, a source told ESPN.com Monday morning that the lineup for the two sides was entirely at the discretion of the individual groups....
PIERRE LEBRUN: Burkle’s inclusion is the key, in my opinion. Hugely successful in his private businesses, the billionaire has a reputation as a deal-maker. Heck, he once named "Man of the Year" by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor. He negotiated with unions many times in his business career. How could he not be a benefit to this process? Burkle, I’m told, has strongly wanted to get involved of late and I believe he’s going into this meeting with the intent of doing everything he can to close the gap between sides. And I don’t think Jacobs' presence in the room means a newbie like Burkle is going to take any marching orders from him....
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