The NHL and NHL Players Association will resume negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement on Friday, according to multiple reports. A location for the meeting has yet to be determined at this time.
This will be the first formal meeting between the two sides since Sept. 12, three days before commissioner Gary Bettman locked out the players for the third time in 18 years on the job. The discussions are reportedly not going to focus on core economic issues.
Last week, Pierre LeBrun of ESPN.com reported that many believed it was crucial for the two sides to get back to the table within a week's span or the lockout could be prolonged as it was in 2004-05, when the two sides went three months without speaking. Now, it's believed that the quality of these discussions will be the litmus test for how long this lockout will last.