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Two sides come close, NHL tables "final" proposal
Just as the outlook for hockey was looking grimmer than ever, the sides spent numerous hours Monday in Niagara Falls, NY and made some significant progress. The NHL dropped its long standing demand for "linkage" between league reveunes versus player salaries and in somewhat of a bombshell, the NHLPA agreed to a hard cap. Now before you go celebrating, that's as close as they came. The league proposed a salary cap that totaled $42 million (including benefits) while the players countered with a $52 million cap that could increase by 10% for 3 of the 6 years. Now that we have come so far, the average fan might say "we seem to have come further than expected - why don't we settle for a $46 million hard cap with the ability to go over by 5% for 3 of the 6 years?" But alas, things aren't that cut and dry. The two sides could not come to an agreement and today, the NHL made its "final offer". The league bumped its ''final offer'' Tuesday to a $42.5-million salary cap plus $2.2 in benefits.