As key people from the NHL and the NHLPA meet on a lovely, snow-covered winter day in Manhattan amid so much enthusiasm of the league’s latest proposal, here’s a warning:
Don’t get your hopes too high.
The latest proposal was a very strong step by the ownership group (and it came with rumors and reports that the Lockout Commissioner was told by his bosses that canceling the season is NOT an option).
But I’d be surprised if the NHLPA simply said today, “We’ll take it,” like Kramer settling out of court with the coffee company.
I suspect there will be some give and take, and maybe even one more gloomy breakdown in the negotiations. And even if it all remains positive, I still believe an agreement won’t come until we get just a bit closer to drop-dead, which is in about two weeks.
The league wants everything signed, dotted and crossed so it can get players into training camps around Jan. 11 or so, and on the ice by Jan. 19 or so for what will be a 48-game, conference-only season.
That will all happen, I’m pretty sure. I just wouldn’t get my hopes up that it will all be nailed down today.
I could definitely be wrong about that.