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Montador on labor talks: “It’s a little poker, it’s a little chess, it’s a little schoolyard battlefield.”

Ryan Whitney, Steve Montador

Edmonton Oilers defenseman Ryan Whitney, left, and Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Steve Montador leave the talks between the NHL Players association and the league at the NHL’s headquarters in New York, Tuesday, July 31, 2012. The NHL is still awaiting the NHLPA s counterproposal as the calendar turns toward August and there appears to be no resolution in sight. The current collective bargaining agreement ends on Sept. 15, and the NHL season is scheduled to open on Oct. 11. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


While fans may be fretting over NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman’s proclamation that they will lock the players out on September 15 if there’s no new CBA, some players are keeping their cool.

Blackhawks defenseman Steve Montador tells Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune that negotiating with the league has a lot of gamesmanship involved with it.

“To compare it to hockey, you have two teams and you’re doing the best you can and you want the best results,” Montador told the Tribune on Friday of the negotiations. “It’s different in that we’re working together, but they have their point of view and we have ours. It’s a little poker, it’s a little chess, it’s a little schoolyard battlefield.”

I always was told love is a battlefield.

The NHLPA will be bringing their proposal to the owners on Tuesday, so the real gamesmanship will get underway then. We’ll also get a better idea whether or not we’re actually headed to a delayed start of the season. If the NHLPA proposal is as out of whack as the owners’ was, it might take a while to sort things out.