In case you had forgotten, there is no NHL hockey because the league locked out its players. No, no—that was 2004—it did it again this year. You might not have realized because the league does this every few years and loses any sort of good will or build up in the fan base it may have accrued since the last time. It's sort of a vicious cycle of abuse.

We're back in the dark times now. It had been rumored that more game cancellations were forthcoming, but then on Sunday we learned the NHLPA requested that the two sides meet Monday evening after having not met for over one week. Progress!

The actual meeting itself didn't last that long, but it doesn't necessarily mean things didn't go well at the table. It was announced shortly after the meeting broke up that the negotiations will continue into Tuesday. At this point, that can certainly be taken as a good sign ... or at worst a "not bad" sign.

OK, so progress might be a little a strong, but it is technically accurate.

Just a day prior to the meetings, the Winnpeg Free Press got an exclusive peek inside the mind of the man behind it all when it scored a 30-minute phone interview with Gary Bettman. He was very Bettman-like.

FP: Do you enjoy this? What's happening right now?

GB: No. It's horrific for the simple reason that we as a business are in business to put on our game and engage with our fans and to grow our game. This entire process is absolutely inconsistent with that. Having said that, any sports league needs a system that works and makes the game and the business of the game healthy.

The NHL: in the business of being in business. Except for those times when it's not in business.

Exclusive: NHL commissioner discusses lockout issues [Winnipeg Free Press]
NHL lockout update: NHL, NHLPA schedule meeting for Monday [NJ.com]