Sides in NHL labor fight meet with mediator

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NEW YORK — The NHL and the union are meeting separately with a federal mediator but have no plans yet to negotiate.

Federal mediator Scot Beckenbaugh is talking with representatives from the players’ association and league Friday in an attempt to return the parties to the bargaining table after they spent most of Thursday apart.

The lockout is in its 111th day. The sides have one week to reach a deal on a collective bargaining agreement that would allow for a 48-game season — the minimum the NHL has said it will play. Commissioner Gary Bettman set a Jan. 11 deadline for a deal so the season can begin eight days later.

The sides met twice Thursday for small meetings, with one session regarding the pension plan. They never got together for a full bargaining session.

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