Jewels From The Crown has been providing the best media coverage of the Kovalchuk contract situation from the beginning. Quisp's take on the bringing the case to an is no exception:
In response to the (many) people saying, and now it's time to select an arbitrator and the league and the NHLPA have to agree and that could take months... No. Because of two facts. One, the CBA requires that there already be an arbitrator. The arbitrator is on retainer or on hold or in the on-bat circle or whatever you call it, year-round.
He delves deep into the relevant sections of the CBA to get an understanding of the arbitrator selection process.