It's time to exhale because the 2015 MLS season will start on time.
For the last week, MLS fans have anxiously been following negotiations between league officials and the Players Union over the new collective bargaining agreement. Although teams have been playing in CONCACAF Champions League and preseason matches since the old five-year arrangement expired on Jan. 31, 2014, a new deal needed to be hammered out before First Kick. If the two sides couldn't come to terms, a strike would become a very real possibility.
Information about the discussions changed on an almost hourly basis with some sources saying that a strike was looming before reporting the opposite. Quotes from both sides became rare as talks became more serious on Wednesday.
Play ball.— Nick Rimando (@NickRimando) March 5, 2015
Soon after, a wave of player tweets helped confirm that MLS would indeed start on time, including a message from New England Revolution goalkeeper Brad Knighton, who was in the nation's capital alongside Chris Tierney.
Deal is done! #MLSCBA— Brad Knighton (@bbknighton) March 5, 2015
Formal information about the new agreement is expected later, but pieces have been leaked to various sources.
Hearing numbers like a seven-year deal, 15 percent increase in the cap and $60,000 minimum salary. #MLSCBA— Adam Jardy (@AdamJardy) March 5, 2015
Details on deal: 5-year CBA. Free agency for age 28+, 8yrs experience. Cap on raise based on salary. Minimum now $60K http://t.co/UkIiUmWnET— Paul Tenorio (@PaulTenorio) March 5, 2015