NHL CBA talks set to resume in New York on Monday, accompanied by little optimism. Read on for the latest.

MLIVE.COM: The NHL and NHLPA are slated to resume CBA negotiations later today in New York, amid speculation the league could cancel the first two weeks of the December schedule.

USATODAY: Kevin Allen breaks down where the two sides stand on the 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue and player contracting rights, the two main issues blocking a potential agreement.

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: David Shoalts reports of little optimism among the two sides as they prepare to meet Monday.

SPORTSNET.CA: John Shannon also isn’t optimistic, believing there’s been nothing of late to suggest either side has reached an epiphany.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The league agreed to today’s meeting at the NHLPA’s request. Unless the latter is willing to be flexible on the “make whole” option and on some player contracting rights, the meeting will be a short one. 

2013 All-Star Game on the chopping block?

COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Aaron Portzline reports the 2013 NHL All-Star Game in Columbus might already be dead, even if the league hasn’t cancelled it yet. “If the owners and players can agree on a collective bargaining agreement to save a shortened season, the demand to pack as many games into a shrunken calendar will make a four- or five-day break in January expendable.” Portzline suggests if that happens, the league might promise the game to the Blue Jackets at a later date, perhaps 2015.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some NHL fans will merely shrug and say, “who cares?” For the sad-sack Blue Jackets and their fans, however, the game was a big deal. Still, it’s probably a better idea to cancel it and stage it in Columbus in two or three years time, as it would allow the team and the city more time to properly prepare for the game, which wouldn’t then be overshadowed by the lingering bad feelings from the lockout among some players and fans.

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: “The Rangers are only willing to refund money monthly for games cancelled the previous month”.

 NESN: Actor and hockey fan Denis Leary calls for the NHL’s return.

 CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Steve Rosenbloom is doing his bit to help NHL-starved fans in Chicago, organizing a big-screen showing of the classic hockey film “Slap Shot” at the Music Box Theater in Chicago on December 6.

EDMONTON SUN (VIA TORONTO SUN): Retailers in Edmonton “say the NHL lockout has led to a boost in sales of sex toys and lingerie among couples.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As a result, “Playing the man”, “between the pipes”, “cherry picking” and “stickhandling” take on whole new meanings…;)