NHL lockout: Mediator not on the horizon

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Neither the NHL nor the NHL Players' Association has pushed hard for a mediator to be involved in the lockout discussions.

Despite the NHL lockout negotiations appearing to be going nowhere anytime soon, neither side has thought deeply about attempting to move the conversation forward with the help of a mediator. At least not yet.

ESPN's Pierre LeBrun reports that both the league and the union have been in contact with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. Director George H. Cohen, a U.S. federal mediator, said each party had reached out, but he declined further comment to LeBrun.

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told LeBrun by email that while both the NHL and NHLPA had been in touch with the FMCS, there appears to be no movement for either side to ask for mediation help right now:

"So far, I think we all have been in agreement that we didn't think that the introduction of a mediator into the process was timely or that it would necessarily further the process. That may change at some point, but it hasn't yet."

Cohen's FMCS played a part in the recent NBA and NFL lockouts.

According to LeBrun, the NHLPA held a conference call on Thursday that reinforced the union's unity. Anonymous players also told LeBrun that the feeling on the call asked for the NHLPA to reach out to the league to continue negotiations.

About a quarter of the NHL season has already been cancelled due to the lockout.

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