via Mark Everson of the NY Post,
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman’s latest idea for this lockout’s end-run around the Players’ Association’s officials — direct talks between an unspecified number of owners, who are professional businessmen, and a number of players, who are professional athletes — could mean an absence of union advice in the talks.
The talks would be conducted without Bettman, deputy commissioner Bill Daly and union heads Donald and Steve Fehr.
The union is said to be taking a ‘Why not?’ attitude rather than giving an enthusiastic endorsement of the concept.
Because of the vulnerable position such talks would put the union in, the Players Association will require the talks not be a negotiation, but rather a conversation in which participants can express themselves, The Post’s Larry Brooks has learned.
In addition, the union will insist the owners involved not include the four on the negotiating committee, led by Boston’s Jeremy Jacobs.