This thread is for all the optimists like myself that, besides what my best judgment tells me, still believe there will be a season this year. Even though weâ€™re being barraged with negativity and the majority in the media seem to have written the year off, thereâ€™s still some signs that point to a deal getting done. The NHLâ€™s stance has all been about linkage lately. Their spin right now is that they arenâ€™t really concerned with a cap, they just want their cost certainty where salaries are a percentage of revenue. The players, as weâ€™ve heard a million times, will never agree to linkage. But as recently as a month or two ago, they were also dead-set against a cap of any sorts. It seems that lately their stance has softened and weâ€™re hearing a cap can be a solution under the right circumstances. So the middle ground is a cap, but not one linked to revenues as the NHL is proposing. Itâ€™s a compromise of sorts and it lets both sides save face. The owners give up linkage, the players agree to a cap, and we get hockey. Think about it, youâ€™ve got players coming out in the media saying a cap would work. A month ago if a player had said that, two hours later theyâ€™d get a phone call from Mr. Goodenow and issue a retraction, that hasnâ€™t happened lately. Which leads me to believe that players are ready to accept one. The only issue is, will the league accept a cap without linkage, and IMO theyâ€™d be damn stupid not to. I believe the talks the last few days have been sorting out the little details, so that when they finally come to this agreement, theyâ€™ll be ready to go pronto. If they really were as far apart as they have us believe, they wouldnâ€™t be talking and the season would have been called off two weeks ago. But in my eyes, theyâ€™re getting closer and closer, and by this time next week, players will be flying in to attend training camp and Iâ€™ll be saying I told you so.