The latest round-up of increasingly depressing NHL CBA news, an update on the sale of the Phoenix Coyotes, an arbiter rejects Lubomir Visnovsky’s attempt to nullify his trade to the Islanders, and Ron Francis is among the Carolina Hurricanes new investors.

TSN.CA: The NHL and NHLPA appear no closer to a CBA resolution after exchanging proposals yesterday in a meeting in New York City. The NHLPA also filed an application with the Quebec Labour Board to declare a lockout illegal in that province.

NHL, NHLPA no closer to CBA resolution.

ESPN.COM/SPORTNET.CA: Pierre LeBrun and Michael Grange don’t expect a resolution anytime soon. Grange encapsulates the situation nicely:

“The owners want their savings on player salaries immediately and they want it guaranteed.

The players want all the money they’re making now as well as raises of two, four and six per cent, compounded, over the next three years.

A deal could be done if the owners softened their stance on the first year or two of the agreement and allowed the growth in league revenues to take the players’ share down gradually and painlessly. And the players could do their part by accepting the likelihood that their path to future wealth lies in taking less — even less than they would like — of a growing business.

But no one wants to take any risk.”

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater suggests both sides are being equally stupid in how they’re handling negotiations.

WINNIPEG SUN: Paul Friesen believes negotiations are headed toward a 50-50 split of HRR, but it will take time to get there as the two sides haggle.

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: Sean Gordon suggests a clash of ideologies may be what’s truly behind the NHL labor dispute, pitting anti-union owners against a players association led by old baseball union hands.

NESN.COM: NHL legends Wayne Gretzky and Bobby Orr don’t believe a lockout will last long this time around. Let’s hope they’re right.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The league did make a significant move with their proposal yesterday by dropping their demands for reduction in players salaries from 24% to 9 percent, and moved closer toward their true goal of seeking a 50/50 split in HRR, plus they’re reportedly not seeking to redefine HRR. The problem, however, is they also made it a “take-it-or-leave it” demand, declaring what they’re proposing comes off the table by midnight Saturday if there’s no deal in place by then. They also don’t appear to be making any serious improvements to revenue sharing and expect the players to pay for it. That’s not going to sit well with the NHLPA membership. The PA, however, still appears reluctant to move much off their initial proposal from mid-August, which isn’t sitting well with the owners. 

Regardless, it seems to me the players aren’t going to get a better deal from the owners if a lockout is implemented on September 15th. If anyone thinks Bettman and his cabal are bluffing, remember the last lockout. They don’t bluff. I’m not saying the players should just capitulate, but I do think they need to move more off their initial position and start working more from the league’s latest proposal to get the best deal they can. Remember, the owners are also short-sighted, and considering how the last two CBAs benefited the players, I don’t see any reason for that trend to change.

NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: cites reports from Arizona indicating Glendale city manager Horatio Skeete wants to change the terms of the Phoenix Coyotes arena payment plan before the sale of the team to Greg Jamison is approved.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS reported yesterday an arbiter has rejected the grievance from Lubomir Visnovsky attempting to get his trade to the Islander overturned.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Visnovsky is in the final season of his current contract.

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: Carolina Hurricanes VP of hockey operations and former star Ron Francis is among the club’s new investors.