Minnesota Wild center Matt Cullen expressed some cautious optimism Tuesday that the NHL and the NHLPA will come to an agreement without a lockout that lasts another whole season. Though the lockout would officially begin midnight Saturday, Cullen said that with camps and the season beginning - the "real" deadlines - might bring more serious proposals to the table:
"As soon as there’s a deadline in there anywhere, that's when people start coming to the table to talk. I think that this deal will get done. I don’t feel there’s a reason for things to be so far apart. I think we’re really close to being in the same ballpark. I feel like it’ll happen fast."
Cullen's comments come as over 280 players travel to New York City for two days of NHLPA meetings with union head Donald Fehr. Four players from the Wild are attending the meetings.