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NHL Lockout 2012: Work Stoppage Looks 'Inevitable'

The NHL looks like it's headed toward its second work stoppage in seven years.

The Associated Press reported on Friday that no further progress has been made between the league and the players association, making another lockout "inevitable."

The parties attempted to make some progress Wednesday by clearing the meeting room of everyone but the key figures: Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly along with Fehr and his brother Steve Fehr, the union's No. 2 man. They soon discovered there was little common ground.

Those same four men will reopen talks next Tuesday in New York during what promises to be a key negotiation session. The sides have tentatively blocked off the rest of the week for meetings as well, but they must first determine if there's anything worth talking about.

The issue, as always, is money. The owners believe they are paying too much (shocker), and the players aren't looking for a pay cut, and wanted to be fairly compensated as they are the ones who actually play and drive the sport.

With the two sides failing to make any progress this week, it's probably unreasonable to expect significant progress next week when the two sides meet in New York.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.