Donald Fehr says players made 'significant concessions' in last CBA discussions

Donald Fehr spoke out about upcoming CBA meetings with the players. (Photo by Andy Marlin/AM Photography/Getty Images)

The NHL’s current collective bargaining agreement runs through September 2022 but according to the NHLPA, players could be looking for an improved deal sooner rather than later.

NHLPA executive director, Donald Fehr spoke to The Athletic’s Katie Strang about the PA’s current plan of action, while highlighting what he sees as compromises made by NHLers when the current deal was signed in 2013.

“Players are cognizant of the fact that in the last negotiations they made a series of significant concessions. And we’ll sort of leave it at that,” Fehr said. 

With the potential to trigger an opt-out clause in September of next year, the deal’s end could come following the 2019-20 season.

“We will be having lots of discussions with players over the course of the ensuing season, starting in the fall, about what that means and how we approach it and what’s on players’ minds and so on,” Fehr said. 

While both the NHL and the Players Association have the right to opt out of the deal at the same time, recent signs suggest that the league will not be looking to stray away from the current setup.

In 2016, the NHL extended an offer to the NHLPA that involved sanctioning players’ participation at the Olympics in exchange for a CBA extension. A deal was obviously never reached.

Some of the major issues that will factor into CBA discussions this time round will be the possibility of a new franchise in Seattle, the maximum-length teams are allowed to sign players to a contract and the involvement of NHL players at the 2022 Olympics.