Obama urges NHL to find labor solution

Posted: December 14, 2012

TWO DAYS of talks between the NHL, the players association and federal mediators still haven't provided any answers how to end the lockout.

Representatives from the fighting sides made it into the same room with a federal mediator Thursday in New York. They just didn't make any noticeable progress. After a failed day Wednesday when the parties on either end of the hockey labor dispute never met with each other, lawyers from each group spoke face-to-face Thursday. They appear no closer to a deal to save the season.

President Barack Obama addressed the stalemate in an interview Thursday with WCCO-TV in Minneapolis.

"My message to owners and to players is, 'You guys make a lot of money and you make a lot of money on the backs of fans, so do right by your fans. You can figure out how to spread out a bunch of revenue that you're bringing in, but do right by the people who support you,' " Obama said. "And I shouldn't have to be involved in a dispute between really wealthy players and even wealthier owners. They should be able to settle this themselves. And remember who it is that's putting all that money in their pockets."

Union special counsel Steve Fehr, who met with league lead counsel Bob Batterman on Thursday, said the sides intend to talk Friday. "I expect the mediators will continue to be involved," Fehr wrote in an email to the Associated Press.

At no point on either day this week did union executive director Donald Fehr meet with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly.

Daly said he expected to talk to Steve Fehr on Friday.

"I'm not sure what the next steps will be," Daly told the AP in an email. "It doesn't appear there was movement by either side on any of the main issues over the last two days."

In other NHL news:

* Detroit Red Wings prospect Riley Sheahan pleaded guilty to drunken driving following his arrest in a Teletubby costume in western Michigan. He was placed on probation for a year and sentenced to 49 hours on a work crew.

Also, Michigan's House approved a bill that could lead to the Red Wings getting a new home.

College Football * 

Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly won the FWAA/Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award. Penn State's Bill O'Brien was among the finalists.

* Alabama and Colorado State will meet next season for the first time in a two-game deal.

Philly File * 

Former Daily News sports editor Larry Merchant is leaving his job as a ringside boxing commentator for HBO Sports after 35 years. His last broadcast will be Saturday. Merchant, 81, says he will become a " Tom Brokaw-like senior kibbitzer on major news and events in boxing."

Sport Stops * 

Tom Watson was named the U.S. captain for the 2014 Ryder Cup in Scotland, when he will be 65. The Americans have lost seven of the last nine Ryder Cups and have not won away from home since 1993, when Watson was the captain at The Belfry in England.

Ryan Lochte anchored a relay victory, and Matthew Grevers and Olivia Smoliga won the men's and women's 100-meter backstroke to improve the U.S. tally of gold to six medals at the short-course world championships in Istanbul.

* Skier Bode Miller likely won't start his World Cup season until February as part of his cautious return from knee surgery. Meanwhile, Miller is taking care of his new wife, pro volleyball player Morgan Miller, whom he hit in the eye with a golf ball Wednesday. She tweeted Thursday that she got 50-plus stitches and still can't see out of her eye.

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