Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 10/03/12 at 06:20 PM ET
from Chris Johnston of the CP at the Winnipeg Free Press,
With no end in sight to the NHL lockout, the league is doing all it can to ease the concerns of its sponsors.
A small group of key clients gathered Wednesday afternoon in Toronto for an audience with chief operating officer John Collins, who provided an update on labour negotiations and took questions from participants.
A source indicated that representatives from Molson, Canadian Tire, Sport Chek, Kraft, Sirius XM and Scotiabank participated in the meeting. One attendee called the session "productive" and applauded Collins for taking part.
"They were very transparent with us," said the source, who requested anonymity. "I was looking around the room and the long-term, cumulative contract dollars around the table were probably at the $100-million mark. It's a significant chunk of change for the league."
The sponsors are an important group for the NHL to interact with during the labour dispute. Commissioner Gary Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly have held a series of conference calls with business partners in recent months in an effort to keep everyone informed.
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