NHLPA agrees to further negotiations with NHL on return-to-play plan
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The NHLPA's executive board has authorized more talks with the NHL on a 24-team playoff format, the union said in a statement Friday night.

"Several details remain to be negotiated and an agreement on the format would still be subject to the parties reaching agreement on all issues relevant to resuming play," the NHLPA added.

The players have agreed to the format, despite the fact that other critical issues still have to be negotiated, reports TSN's Pierre LeBrun, who reiterated a point he made earlier Friday that the NHL will now have to conduct its own "process," with an announcement expected to come within the next few days.

One of the issues that remains open for discussion is whether a playoff bracket will be used, and if the teams would reseed, according to Sportsnet's Chris Johnston.

LeBrun adds that another issue being talked about is whether the first round of the actual playoffs, after the play-in round, would be best-of-five or the regular best-of-seven.

The NHLPA's executive board reportedly held a conference call to discuss the league's 24-team playoff format Thursday night, after which it initiated a vote.

The postseason structure in question would have the top four teams in each conference receiving byes but playing one another in a round-robin tournament before facing the winners of the best-of-five matchups between the next-best 16 clubs.

If and when a further announcement is made, it's not expected to include a timetable for a return or a list of critical dates, TSN's Bob McKenzie reported earlier Friday.

NHLPA agrees to further negotiations with NHL on return-to-play plan
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