The NHLs current collective bargaining agreement ends on September 15, and if there is no new agreement by then the league will lock out the players, commissioner Gary Bettman confirmed on Thursday, according to several media reports.
Previously, NHLPA head Donald Fehr said that the players would be willing to start the season on time without an agreement, but the league wont allow that to happen.
We reiterated to the union that the owners will not play another year under the current agreement, said Bettman.
Multiple reports have said that the owners would like to decrease the players share of hockey-related revenue from 57 percent to 46 percent; increase the number of years a player must play before he can become an unrestricted free agent from seven to 10; cap the length of contracts at five years; eliminate salary arbitration; and make entry-level contracts five years rather than three.
The players association would like to see an increase in the amount of revenue sharing, something the NHL currently does in a limited capacity.
The two sides will continue meeting next week in Toronto, where the NHLPA is expected to make a formal counter-proposal.