Steve Burton of CBS Boston reported Monday night that a source has told him significant progress has been made toward ending the NHL Lockout. An unannounced meeting took place Monday with high ranking representatives from both sides being in attendance and that an announcement could be made as early as Tuesday that an end of the lockout is near.
Burton is a credible media source who in the past had broke news of Phil Kessel‘s cancer and Tim Thomas announcing that he would take a year away from hockey. One would think that his report Monday night would be no different from the past reports, however with the lockout history any news unless confirmed by a high ranking representative from either side could just in fact be a rumor.
There’s also the conspiracy route that myself and others tend to go where this could just be something to distract us from something bigger that’s about to happen. On Tuesday the several NHL team owners will meet with players one on one without NHLPA representative Don Fehr or NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman present. Should that meeting have negative affects on progress, could the NHL point the finger at the players saying a deal was close and that the players simply won’t budge from their past proposal? Bettman was the one to make the suggestion of a player and owner only meeting afterall, could a league source be the one to leak the information to Burton in preparation for what is about to unfold at the Tuesday meeting?
Then again the fan side of me has me hoping that something has been worked out and we could be only days away from having a new CBA in place. However it’s also been reported that both the NHL and NHLPA have denied any reports of a meeting today. I guess we’ll truly know for sure once either side steps forward and makes a statement on the matter for us to hear for ourselves. Video of Burton breaking the news of a deal being close can be found here.