It's becoming obvious that the NHL's latest proposal is not going to be accepted as is by the NHLPA. It's been described by some players as a "starting point," and perhaps provides the two sides with a spark to get going in the right direction that will lead to a settlement before more games (and signature events) are lost.

Even if the two sides are able to come to an agreement in relatively short order, the final settlement is going to be different than what the league posted on its website Wednesday morning.

But one of the more interesting aspects of the league's proposal is its obvious intention of closing the loophole from the previous collective bargaining agreement that allowed teams to sign players to long-term, front-loaded contracts in an effort to reduce the salary-cap hit over the duration of the contract.