NHL, Players’ Association Meet to End Three-Week-Old Lockout

The National Hockey League and the players’ association met yesterday to discuss efforts to reach a contract and end the three-week-old lockout that has resulted in the cancellation of 189 games.

Commissioner Gary Bettman and Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly were in Toronto to talk to NHL Players Association Executive Director Donald Fehr and Special Counsel Steve Fehr.

“Yes, we had a meeting,” Daly said yesterday afternoon. “Nothing else to report at this time.”

At the center of the disagreement between the two sides are players’ salaries, salary arbitration and the length of unrestricted free agency. Daly has complained that the union wants to focus on secondary issues rather than the major economic elements of the agreement.

The collective bargaining agreement ended Sept. 15, with the league calling a lockout the following day. The preseason and the first two weeks of the regular season, slated to start Oct. 11, have been canceled.

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