After three-and-a-half months of talks, the NHL and the NHL Players’ Association (NHLPA) have agreed on a tentative Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that will end the 2012-13 lockout and put players back on the ice.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters around 5 a.m. today that the two sides had come to a general agreement.
“[Players’ Representative] Don Fehr and I are here to tell you that we have reached an agreement for the framework of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement,” Bettman said.
But there’s still some work to be done: “The details of which need to be put to paper. We’ve got to dot a lot of eye i’s, cross a lot of t’s.”
The NHL Board of Governors and the Players’ Association still have to green light the agreement once it’s drafted. In the meantime the league will get to work on making a schedule for the stunted season.
Both sides had until January 11 to reach an agreement before the entire season would have been cancelled. The season was to start on January 19 if a deal was signed by the deadline, Bettman said last week.
The lockout officially began at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, September 15 when the two sided failed to agree on a new CBA by deadline to allow for a full season.
In the meantime, many players have gone overseas to play and make up for the pay lost because of the lockout.
The league and the Players Association are expected to hold press conferences in the days to come as more information comes out.