The N.H.L. Players’ Association made a counteroffer to the league Monday, and in sharp contrast to the last time that happened, Commissioner Gary Bettman’s response was calm and measured, not angrily dismissive.
Whether that was a sign that progress was being made to end the N.H.L. lockout was impossible to say. But Bettman said the league would study the proposal the union submitted Monday night and would get back in touch on Tuesday morning, with more face-to-face talks possible in the afternoon.
The union’s proposal is “something we’ve now got to look at very closely,” Bettman told reporters on the Avenue of the Americas as New Year’s Eve revelers streamed past the N.H.L.’s Midtown office. “But obviously the process continues, and as I said, we’re anticipating getting back together tomorrow.”
Details of the union proposal were not made available. Jan. 1 was the scheduled date for the Winter Classic, long canceled by the lockout, in which the Detroit Red Wings were to have faced the Toronto Maple Leafs before an expected crowd of more than 100,000 in Ann Arbor, Mich.
told ownership they're at the point of diminishing returns. They'll break even with a shortened season, with the small market teams able to make some extra money in the playoffs.
The real money is in the playoffs when ticket prices double and triple and the money from national TV is never discussed as ownership sends excess profits to the Caymans.