Originally written on Fox Sports West  |  Last updated 9/13/12

CHICAGO - MAY 03: Commissioner Gary Bettman of the National Hockey League speaks at a press conference before the Chicago Blackhawks take on the Vancouver Canucks in Game Two of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at United Center on May 3, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
NEW YORK (AP) -- NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman maintains the league will lock out players Sunday if a new labor deal isn't reached, and star player Sidney Crosby isn't optimistic the season will start on time. With both sides far apart and little time before the current deal expires at midnight EDT Saturday, the league's board of governors met in New York on Thursday as a group of more than 280 players gathered at a hotel a short distance away. Following lockouts last year by basketball and football owners, Bettman says hockey management is determined to come away with economic gains, even if it forces the NHL's fourth work stoppage since 1992. "Two other leagues -- the NBA and the NFL -- their players have recognized that in these economic times there is a need to retrench," Bettman said during a news conference that followed the unanimous endorsement of a lockout during a two-hour owners' meeting. The last labor stoppage caused the cancellation of the entire 2004-05 season, a ...
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