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NHL & NHLPA Step Back From Negotiations

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NEW YORK (Sports Network) - The NHL and NHLPA wrapped up three straight days of negotiating Sunday and will now take a step back to have internal discussions concerning a new collective bargaining agreement.

No further meetings between the sides are currently scheduled.

“It’s not like we’re breaking off negotiations, it’s that we need a little more time to do some work,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said. “(The Union has) got some work to do too.”

The crux of Sunday’s five-hour discussion revolved around various health and player-safety issues, including drug testing and medical care, which were also discussed during Friday’s session.

On Saturday, the sides met about the definition of hockey-related revenue.

“I would say that it’s good we’re talking,” NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr said. “It is true that we could have done this last week or the week before or the week before that, but it’s a lot better than doing it three weeks from now. So, I think it’s some progress and hopefully it will continue.”

The league has already canceled the entire preseason, and next week regular- season games are likely to be on the chopping block. The regular season is slated to start Oct. 11.

The owners locked out the players when the previous CBA expired at 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Sept. 15. Friday brought the first formal negotiating session since the lockout began.

Money, specifically revenues earmarked to players, remains at the center of the controversy. Under the expired CBA, players received 57 percent of hockey revenue. Owners reportedly want to reduce that number to as low as 47 percent.

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