New York, NY (NNCNOW.com) --- A tentative verbal agreement on a collective bargaining agreement has been reached between the NHL and the NHL Players' Association (NHLPA), it was announced early Sunday morning.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr made the announcement in a joint news conference following a full day of negotiating with a federal mediator.
"We still have a lot of work to do," Bettman said, "but it's good to be at this point."
The deal still needs to be put into legal language and ratified by both sides, which could happen as soon as Tuesday. The NHL board of governors and the NHLPA membership must each approve the deal before it can become official.
Bettman wouldn't say Sunday morning when games would begin should the deal be ratified, but either a 48- or 50-game schedule has been discussed in recent days.
The ongoing labor dispute has now lasted 113 days and forced cancellation of regular season games through Jan. 14, a total of 625 contests.