DONALD FEHR and the NHL Players' Association are ready to get back to the bargaining table at any moment. They are now just waiting for the NHL to feel the same way.
"[We aren't talking] because the owners have not indicated a desire to resume," the NHLPA's executive director said Wednesday night in Toronto before a charity hockey game. "We've indicated any number of times that we're willing to resume when they are [and] we're willing to resume without preconditions.
"So we're waiting to hear back from them."
The sides haven't negotiated with one another since Dec. 6 in New York, when talks broke down. They also met with a U.S. federal mediator for 2 days in New Jersey last week and reported no progress. Since then, there has been only limited contact between the sides, including a brief email exchange on Wednesday.
The NHL believes that negotiations should resume only when there is something new to say.
"I don't think either party is refusing a meeting," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said in an email. "But unless there is an indication one side or the other is prepared to move or has a new idea to move the process forward - and so far neither side has indicated - I am not sure what we would do at the meeting."
Daly created a stir earlier Wednesday on CBC's "Hockey Night In Canada Radio" when he was asked to give a yes-or-no answer on whether there would be an agreement in time to save the season.
Daly said, "Yes."
Roger Springfield, the media director for Syracuse's athletic department, is no longer employed by the school and, according to the Syracuse Post-Standard, is being investigated by police and the district attorney's office. A school spokesman confirmed his departure but did not provide additional information.
* Texas-Pan American has accepted an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference starting in July 2013. The Broncs were previously members of the Sun Belt.
Sport Stops *
Rory McIlroy was voted the best male player by the Golf Writers Association of America. He received 190 of the 194 votes.
* Germany's Viktoria Rebensburg won the women's giant slalom World Cup race in Are, Sweden, snapping Slovenian Tina Maze's winning streak at four.
* Jockey Eddie Ahern, former Premier League soccer player Neil Clement and four other men have been charged with serious breaches of horse-racing rules in the latest scandal to hit the sport in Britain. The British Horseracing Authority says Ahern is accused of holding back his horse during a race at Lingfield in January 2011 and passing on inside information linked to four other races. Clement, now a registered racehorse owner, faces charges linked to the same races. Clement is also accused of breaching rules by betting against his own horse in February 2011.