All those good vibrations generated between the NHL and its players unionover the weekend evaporated with two words on Tuesday.No progress.That's how NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly described a brief meetingwith NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr on Tuesday as the two sides butted heads againon the key economic issues that forced the owners to shut down the league onSept. 16.I dont think that we have a lack of communication in this negotiation, Dalytold reporters in New York.They understand what our position is. To this point we certainly understandwhat their position is. We just wish it was different.In a nutshell, the two sides are at odds over how to divide an estimated 3.3 billion in annual revenue, an amount thatdwindles with each passing day. The leagues six-year proposal calls for the players share of revenuedecreasing from its current 57 percent to 47 percent. The players proposal does not seetheir share of revenue dropping below 52 percent.The obvious compromise is a 50-50 split, but neither side is willing to moveto that point, at least not until several games and millions of dollars arelost.Its clear that the players havemade substantial moves towards the owners and the owners have made substantialmoves away from the players, Fehr said.While both sides wait for the other to blink, the NHL is just days away fromcanceling its first large chunk of regular season games. The NHL regular seasonis scheduled to begin on Oct. 11, with the Caps slated to open the following nightat home against the New Jersey Devils.Daly said the league already has lost close to 100 million in revenue inthe first 17 days of the lockout. That number will grow exponentially if theNHL decides to cancel all games in October, which is likely to happen beforethe end of this week.That revenue is not going to be recouped and thats going to cost bothsides, Daly said.Actually, only the owners have lost real money through the first 17 days ofthe lockout. The players wont begin missing their bi-weekly paychecks untillate October and even then they will be receiving escrow checks amounting to roughly8.5 percent of last years salaries.But with league revenues down, so will be the players share of thatrevenue, turning this lockout into a lose-lose-lose-lose situation for owners,players, fans and the thousands of arena workers who will not be employedduring the work stoppage.If there is any silver lining in the negotiations it is the fact both sidescontinue to talk. Fehr indicated he will speak with NHL commissioner GaryBettman again on Wednesday and hopes to meet with him again before the end ofthe week.Got a reasonable solution to the stalemate? And in your opinion, how many games must be played to legitimize an NHL season? Join the conversation below.
What: Washington Capitals vs. Tampa Bay Lightning
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
How to Watch: Capitals-Lightning will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)
Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Lightning game on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page.
You can also stream the game online with no cable TV subscription on fuboTV (try for free!).
WHEN IS THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?
The Capitals (34-18-7) take on the Lightning (39-17-3) Tuesday, February 20 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Washington.
WHAT CHANNEL IS THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME ON?
The Capitals-Lightning game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off with Capitals FaceOff at 6:00 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 6:30 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington for Caps Extra following the game, Caps Overtime at 10:00 p.m. and Caps in 30 at 11:00 p.m. for all your postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)
6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals vs. Lightning
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime
11:00 p.m. — Caps in 30
WHAT ARE THE PROJECTED LINES FOR THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?
Here are the projected lines for the Caps-Lightning game:
Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson
Jakub Vrana - Evgeny Kuznetsov - T.J. Oshie
Brett Connolly - Lars Eller - Andre Burakovsky
Chandler Stephenson - Jay Beagle - Devante Smith-Pelly
Christian Djoos - John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik - Madison Bowey
Braden Holtby starts with Philipp Grubauer as backup
Scratches: Alex Chiasson, Taylor Chorney
WHERE CAN I STREAM THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?
The Capitals-Lightning game, as well as Caps GameTime and Caps Extra, is available to stream live here through NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and is available to authenticated NBC Sports Washington subscribers on desktops, tablets, mobile devices and connected TVs anywhere in the United States.
The game is also available to stream, along with all the pregame and postgame shows, on fuboTV (try for free).
CAPITALS-LIGHTNING OPEN THREAD
Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans.
For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.
You may think this was an ugly four-game road trip for the Caps, but with a 3-2 win in Buffalo on Monday, Washington managed to earn five out of a possible eight points.
Here is why the Caps beat the Sabres and managed to save the road swing.
A missed high-stick (maybe) from Ovechkin
Ovechkin scored the first goal of the game in the second period as he deflected a high-shot from Christian Djoos down past goalie Chad Johnson. But did the deflection come on a high stick? The play was reviewed and the goal was ultimately upheld. According to the NHL, it was determined that "video review supported the Referee's call on the ice that Alex Ovechkin's stick was at or below the height of the crossbar when he tipped the puck into the Buffalo net."
NBC Sports Washington analyst Alan May broke the play down during the second intermission and made his case for why the NHL actually got the call wrong.
Was that a high stick? I don't know. As compelling an argument as May made, it still looks inconclusive which means the review made the right call. What surprises me is that the referee did not disallow the goal on the initial call.
Whether the review is truly inconclusive or flat out wrong, Washington was fortunate to walk away from this sequence with the goal.
A centimeter of ice
Hockey is a game of inches and it took less than an inch to put Washington up 2-0. When an Evgeny Kuznetsov shot hit off the boards and bounced back to the front of the net, it sparked a scrum next to goalie Chad Johnson. Eventually, John Carlson was able to get a swipe on the puck sending it trickling to the goal line, but Kyle Okposo was there waiting and appeared to kick it out to safety just before it crossed. A review triggered by the Situation Room, however, revealed that the puck had just barely managed to cross the goal line before Okposo got to it.
Here's the view the NHL released after the review:
Philipp Grubauer's third period
After dominating the first 40 minutes of the game and taking a 2-0 lead, Buffalo predictably made a late push in the third period with two goals to pull within one. Washington outshot the Sabres in the first and second periods, but Buffalo reversed that trend in a big way in the third as they outshot the Caps 17-6. Grubauer turned aside 15 of those shots and was impressive after barely being tested in the first two periods.