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Report: Mediator brought sides together

DeMaurice Smith, Scott Fujita AP

After two days of meetings in the Chicago area, NFL and NFLPA* representaives are leaving the Chicago area Thursday afternoon.  Apparently they were in Chicago in the first place at the urging of mediator Arthur Boylan.

Bob Glauber of Newsday has the details:

“A person familiar with the inner workings of the talks said that it was Boylan who called the parties together in a bid to continue dialogue. No breakthroughs were expected, however, and, as of yesterday, no new proposals were exchanged,” Glauber writes.

It’s a little disappointing the two sides didn’t get together on their own, but their willingness to sit face-to-face for a few days without lawyers is still a step in the right direction.

Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reports that the meetings held at the Hotel Baker have wrapped up, with DeMaurice Smith and a contingent of five players leaving a meeting with the NFL shortly after noon CT.

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27 Responses to “Report: Mediator brought sides together”
  1. derekjetersmansion says: Jun 2, 2011 2:23 PM

    I still don’t understand why this happened now. Why not 3 weeks ago? What changed?

  2. dbellina says: Jun 2, 2011 2:25 PM

    Seriously, let’s just get this thing finished. I want to start playing some Fantasy Football already!

  3. springy619 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:26 PM

    they better get this done, no football = 100% boredom come fall.

  4. buckybadger says: Jun 2, 2011 2:26 PM

    How come I picture taking place with lots drinks and cigars going around and they all have an escort on their lap? Maybe I watch to much TV.

  5. netherscourge says: Jun 2, 2011 2:26 PM

    Not getting anything done face-to-face is better than not getting anything done hundreds of miles apart.

    Ok, maybe I’m being too optimistic.

    This was, in reality, nothing but a PR stunt to make both the Players and Owners look like they actually care about anything other than money.

  6. nfl25 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:29 PM

    if the lockout gets lifted we will never get a deal done. and i bet the nfl shuts down. if the lockout is not lifted, the players will counter offer and there should be a deal struck in a few weeks and we will (hopefully) never have to hear demo smith’s stupid voice again

  7. airraid77 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:29 PM

    going through the courts is a no win situation. Seriously, do you want to be d-smith or goodell or the owners or the players that killed the NFL?

  8. seabreezes51 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:29 PM

    Derekjetersmansion:

    New month, closing in on last chance

  9. killxswitch says: Jun 2, 2011 2:30 PM

    That’s disappointing. Whoever loses at the hearing is going to dig in stubbornly while the winner will try to use their leverage to play hardball.

  10. smacklayer says: Jun 2, 2011 2:31 PM

    As I’ve said before, Demo and the palyers are in too deep to negotiate now. Anything less complete dominance of the owners in court will be considered a loss for Demo. A good compromise woul dbe considered a loss for him. The main issue is that he called a moderately good offer in March the worst deal ever, so now he can’t accept anything but a complete defeat of the owers; he has no room to negotiate because he didn’t leave himself any room to move around.

    This is why there have been no counter offers and this is why he has not even shown the players the actual offer the owners gave him.

    For those of you who do not see Demo as the main obstacle here, you must be blind. No one wins in negotiating, no one loses either. Demo is the wrong man for this job.

  11. ralphshere says: Jun 2, 2011 2:32 PM

    Positive news!

  12. richsaint says: Jun 2, 2011 2:33 PM

    This does dash a bit of my hopefullness from this morning.
    Maybe they have been meeting all along and we just dont know about it? (Doubtful)
    Hopefully they will take monday at exactly what it is, a real chance to get a deal done without court overseeing the next CBA for the next 20 years.

  13. radrhatr says: Jun 2, 2011 2:34 PM

    @derekjetersmansion

    The mediator probably suggested it 3 weeks ago.

    I knew it was too good to be true. Looks like I’m going to be spending the $5000 I give the NFL this year on a new Harley.

  14. goawayeverybody says: Jun 2, 2011 2:35 PM

    The lack of fantasy football opportunities is really starting to piss me off. I have a league with my friends and a traveling trophy and we were really looking forward to this!

  15. airraid77 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:35 PM

    what I hope ends up happening is an overnight negotiating session.

  16. skoobyfl says: Jun 2, 2011 2:40 PM

    90 days until camp needs to start, it’s time to get those Billions a rolling in.

  17. pastorinisflak1281 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:47 PM

    I guess sitting face-to-face is better than sitting butt-to-butt….or face-to-butt.

  18. jsmayer181 says: Jun 2, 2011 2:49 PM

    @goawayeverybody Run your fantasy league replacement-player style and pick a college football conference to draft players from.

    Seriously, though, even though the mediator involvement dampens some hope that these meetings will turn into progress, there mere fact that the sides are coming together outside of a direct order from a judge has to be a good thing.

    The NFL, after all, has resisted the notion that they should mediate in front of an officer of the court. The Players, on the other hand, have said for a few weeks that they weren’t interested in meeting until after the 8th Circuit ruled on their side of things.

  19. djstat says: Jun 2, 2011 2:52 PM

    What makes no sense is why do they end the talks. Lock yourself in a room and solve the problem. Its amazing a group of “educated” men cannot figure out how to do a deal. The fact that sides are waiting for leverage shows how narrow minded they are because they clearly do not plan to lose. De Smith needs to be punched in the mouth whenever he talks and Goodell needs to buy a clue an realize fans do not want an 18 game schedule

  20. klunge says: Jun 2, 2011 3:20 PM

    @djstat:
    Unfortunately greed and pride on both sides nullify any level of “education” these guys may have. Your assessments on Smith & Goodell are right on though.

  21. rabidbillsfan says: Jun 2, 2011 3:47 PM

    This is getting stupid. Whats the point in meeting if no new proposals were submitted? I could understand if they were still banging out the details, but they’re not. Both parties know what the other party wants, so why meet and have nothing come out of it? D Smith is an idiot, Godell may be watering down the game with rules, but DMO is trying to get rid of it all together.

  22. tommyf15 says: Jun 2, 2011 3:58 PM

    nfl25 says:
    if the lockout gets lifted we will never get a deal done. and i bet the nfl shuts down.

    I wish this were real life and not a message board, because I would quickly take you up on that bet.

    The NFL teams are worth close to or over a billion dollars each. Yeah, the NFL is just going to shut down (rolls eyes).

    What’s funny is that many people here are both so stubborn and so pro-owner that they’d rather see the NFL shut down than see the players win.

  23. tommyf15 says: Jun 2, 2011 4:10 PM

    djstat says:
    What makes no sense is why do they end the talks. Lock yourself in a room and solve the problem. Its amazing a group of “educated” men cannot figure out how to do a deal.

    I genuinely don’t get it when people say this.

    Every day in every county in the United States people go to various courts to resolve disputes when they can’t come to an agreement themselves. Not all of these people are uneducated.

    As I understand it the owners want the salary cap system they’ve had in the past plus an extra billion dollars a year, while the players don’t want a salary cap at all. That doesn’t seem easily fixable.

  24. tommyf15 says: Jun 2, 2011 4:13 PM

    rabidbillsfan says:
    D Smith is an idiot, Godell may be watering down the game with rules, but DMO is trying to get rid of it all together.

    Don’t you realize what a silly thing that is to say?

  25. upperdecker19 says: Jun 2, 2011 4:38 PM

    These guys make Bud Selig and Donald Fehr appear competent.

  26. tommyf15 says: Jun 2, 2011 4:59 PM

    upperdecker19 says:
    These guys make Bud Selig and Donald Fehr appear competent.

    Make no mistake, both Fehr and Selig are quite competent. MLB has more than doubled it’s revenues over the past decade under Selig, and Fehr has made sure the players retained a free-market system that allows them a reasonable share of that pie.

  27. david7590 says: Jun 2, 2011 5:33 PM

    In the NBA they’re on the verge of avoiding a lockout because the Union is actually willing to talk to the Commissioner. You know, just sayin, negotiating in good faith helps.

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