The Quebec Labour Board has ruled in the NHL's favor in a case to determine the legality of a player lockout in the Canadian province, according to TSN's Darren Dreger. The NHLPA, led by 16 Montreal Canadiens players, sought an interim ruling, hoping the board would find the lockout to be illegal before the scheduled start of the NHL lockout on Saturday at 11:59 p.m. ET.
The NHLPA is not a credited union in Quebec, so the group faced an uphill battle from the start. The ruling means the NHL would not face any legal action should they lock the players out.
Commissioner Gary Bettman was unanimously backed by the league's owners this week and the lockout will begin on Saturday should a collective bargaining agreement not be reached. The sides are still far apart, especially in terms of the players' revenue sharing cut, so a deal is not likely.
Should a work stoppage begin on Saturday, it would be the fourth such occurrence for the NHL since 1992.