Penguins play key role in late-night labour talks: report


NHL labour talks seemed to be picking up speed as they continued late into the night Tuesday in New York.

A group of 18 players and six owners met for more than five hours Tuesday afternoon, took a break for dinner and then resumed talks at 10 p.m. The talks wrapped up just before midnight and owners and players made contact early Wednesday morning and were expected to return to negotiations later in the day.

Rob Rossi, the Penguins/NHL beat reporter for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, reported that the Penguins played a major role in the talks, led by team co-owner Ron Burkle and captain Sidney Crosby. Co-owner Mario Lemieux also arrived in New York Tuesday and Rossi reported he would attend Wednesday’s board of governors meeting along with Penguins CEO David Morehouse. Rossi also reported that Burkle and Crosby were described by participants in Tuesday’s talks as “voices of reason.”

One source close to Crosby told The Canadian Press: “Sid’s a team guy. He’s about the game.”

You can read Rossi’s report by clicking here.

The Canadian Press reported that the marathon session was accompanied by whispers of optimism.

“I appreciate the efforts of the players in particular,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told reporters in New York late Tuesday night. “We had 18 players in there today and six of our owners. I think everybody is working hard, I think everybody wants to get a deal done so I think that’s encouraging.

“We look forward to hopefully making more progress tomorrow.”

Read more by clicking here.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman met with the media briefly Wednesday afternoon in New York, saying he was “pleased” with how the talks were going. He added that “out of respect” for the labour process, he wasn’t going to say anything more and didn’t take questions.

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)


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