Updated 01/07/2013 10:56 AM
NHL, Hockey Players' Union Reach Tentative Deal To End Lockout
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Hockey players could soon be sharpening their skates again, as the National Hockey League and the players' union have reached a tentative deal early Sunday to end the 113-day lockout.
The NHL deal was reached after a 16-hour negotiating session that started Saturday afternoon.
It calls for a 10-year collective bargaining agreement, and sets a seven-year term limit on free agent contracts, although clubs can go to eight years to re-sign their own players.
The two sides also agreed on a salary cap and a pension plan.
"We have to go through a ratification process," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "The board of governors has to approve it, on the league side. Obviously, the players have to approve it as well. We're not in a position right now to give you any information about schedule, when we're starting."
The league had said a deal must be reached by Friday in order to have a shortened, 48-game season.
Hockey fans told NY1 they were relieved, as more than half the season has already been canceled, including the All-Star Game.
"Very happy about it. Can't wait. My wife is not but I am," said a fan.
"I think it's good. I think they shot themselves in the foot a little bit," said another fan. "I hope that people come back to hockey because there's a good chance people might be really frustrated."
The deal would keep the NHL from canceling the entire season for the second time in just eight years.