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No NHL talks Monday

The SportsXchange

The NHL labor dispute dragged on another day Monday, with no talks between league officials and the locked-out players.

NHL Players Association special counsel Steve Fehr told ESPNNewYork.com that his side is awaiting the next phone call from management.

"We are ready, willing, able and eager to negotiate," Fehr said. "We want to get an agreement and we want to get it done as soon as possible."

Since management and the players last spoke Thursday, both sides have made legal moves to bolster their positions.

The players began voting Sunday whether to allow the union's executive board to disband the NHLPA through a "disclaimer of interest." The New York Daily News reported Monday that approval for dissolving the union is expected to occur by Thursday, at which point players could file lawsuits alleging the league is an illegal monopoly.

Detroit Red Wings foreward Daniel Cleary, the team's player representative, told Detroit reporters he believes the players will overwhelmingly vote to decertify the union.

"The way we look at it is, we've got 2 1/2 weeks," Cleary said, referring to the prospect of saving the 2012-13 season. "Either we are playing, or we're not. I just hope that we get back to playing. I'm nervous."

Last week, the NHL filed a lawsuit in an attempt to confirm the legality of the lockout. The league also filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, claiming the players' vote on dissolution of the union creates bad-faith bargaining.

In an email to the Los Angeles Times on Monday, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly wrote that he didn't think the legal filings would "play an immediate role" in reaching a settlement. However, he added, "The PA knows where we are and what would get a deal done. We will see how they decide to play it."

According to the Times, the NHL Network and NHL.com will try to fill the void for hockey fans by airing the World Junior Championships. The tournament, which will be held in Russia, runs Dec. 26-Jan. 5.
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