3rd Update: Countdown to lockout; They’re listening

Posted: 08/31/2012 by bc in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

via NHL Trade Report:

Bettman & Daily met with 5 NHLPA reps. Former Duck Zenon Konopka characterized the meeting as educational. At least they listened as each side explained its respective latest offer/responsive counter-offer.

Cause for hope? Meh, it is what it is. They should have been at this point months ago were it not for the NHL stating as recently as 60 days ago  that the current CBA need only minor tweaking. The NHL’s minor tweak is a 20% haircut from the players and “Oh BTW,  you want more revenue sharing? Okay but you pay for that too.”

One possible resolution is multi-pronged, (1) the players offer the cost certainty of accepting the NHL’s 5 year EL’s, 10 years to UFA and 5 yr contracts and the elimination of arbitration, (2) Maintain the current definition of Hockey Related Revenues (HRR) that provides for capital cost allowances and leaves the players a  50-54% of HRR less the capital cost allowance, (3) Eliminate the escrow. 

THN’s Ken Campbell frames the argument from the owner’s side. In anything but a newsflash, Campbell describes how the owner’s undermined the present CBA which forces Bettmann to draw a hard line he’s doing now.

Darren Dreger says there is a risk the entire season is wiped out. My worst fear can be seen on the horizon.

From THN’s Say What? feature:

For whatever reason, (lockouts) seem to be what Gary likes to do. Whether this time around it’s a negotiating tactic or what, you’d hope that he’s smart enough to realize that as a league, the fanbases, with the momentum that the league has gotten, that it wouldn’t be a good idea to have a lockout.”

Minnesota‘s Zach Parise, on the possibility of another work stoppage.

Two weeks to go interrupted by the last holiday weekend of the summer. The vast majority of fans seem to have tuned out. Even if a short lockout transpires, how many of those fans and more importantly corporate sponsors will leave the game?

Players are looking at Plan B options. Europe and the KHL. Will we lose Evgeni Malkin for example? How many others?

I suppose the NHL and NHLPA have been good stewards of the business operations. The numbers tell a story of consistent growth. Granted much of the financial health of the NHL has to do with forces it cannot control or influence; the exchange rate between the US and Canadian dollars.

Just once in my lifetime it would be so nice to see the stakeholders put the good of the game ahead of their financial interests. Gentlemen, it’s time to compromise and drop the puck! End of rant.

  1. yougetoutwhatyouputin says:

    If you recall, it took two+ season to recovery from the last lockout…if the NHL postpones or cancels the season they are risking losing allot of new fans. They cannot afford to lockout in a market that considers them fourth in popularity. USA sports popularity: Football, Baseball, Basketball, and Hockey. Don’t let Greed and Pride get in the way of the bigger pitcher.

  2. tearingitup says:

    I remember being upset at that last lockout. These guys did not learn one thing. After that dead season the NHL could not even get the Garden channel to carry the games, and it took time before Fox sports and ESPN even mentioned hockey as a sport.

  3. czhokej says:

    Malkin is negotiating with Magnitogorsk, and Ovechkin would like to help Dynamo Moscow. Jagr in caso of a lockout will play for his team Kladno.
    I do not know who is more greedy, owners or players? What is a fair share? Players were getting 57%, the owners now suggested 50-50 split.

  4. tearingitup says:

    If the players are getting 57% and the owners want it 50-50, why not have them donate the difference to charity? I should not care so much what these millionaires are doing, but I enjoy the game.

  5. bc says:

    Negotiations are halted. Bettman is irritated that the PA actions are less than predictable. In Fehr, the Owners are up against the most seasoned and successful negotiator of the modern era. Mainstream media is predicting a season starting on 12/1.
    Speculating on an outcome is a game I don’t indulge, except when the client is paying by the hour.
    All the signs indicate lockout but there’s still time to get a new CBA in place.

  6. tearingitup says:

    Really screwy group of people and they can not see that unless you live in the ice box part of the world, hockey will be replaced by other passions. Remember when championship poker received more viewers than playoff games? If one is unable to negotiate…..they are failures and then need to be replaced by those who can. If ya can’t negotiate how do you ever buy a house or a car?

    • bc says:

      Well tearingitup, we keep hoping for adults with common sense and all we find is a bunch low rent hucksters.

  7. czhokej says:

    The Ducks’ page at NHL.com has some interesting news: Premium Tasting Event. Great!

    The annual Premium Tasting event was held Tuesday evening at Honda Center, giving Suite and Club Seat holders the opportunity to sample fare being offered at the arena this upcoming season.

    Who needs hockey! (?)

  8. tearingitup says:

    I am sure we could get the steer riders back for a few more engagements.

  9. bc says:

    It is painfully obvious that the NHL/NHLPA is just not a reliable partner. Even for this blog, I devote anywhere from 20-50 hours per week during the season. Multiply that by tens of thousands to even begin to guesstimate the commitment of media, merchandisers, equipment manufacturers. It’s huge.
    Fans can’t plan all because a bunch of greedy smurfs are arguing over money. Really, the NHL/NHLPA are what’s wrong with the game of hockey.

  10. tearingitup says:

    your dedication is immense…..I am glad we have a spot to discuss and most importantly ..vent.

  11. bc says:

    tearingitup, baseball had to go through the juiced ball and ‘roid built athletes era to bring fans back after its failure to resolve a management/labor dispute. And yeah those athletes willingly took the steroids and juiced the balls to keep the money flowing.

    I had season tickets to the Dodgers in 1988 but left baseball never to return after the last time the stadiums went dark. I left football when it was taking 4 hours and more to play a 60 minute game. And of that 60 minute football game game we get about 8 minutes of actual play.

    I’ll never leave hockey but I wonder how many will. If people leave in significant numbers, how will the game be corrupted to bring them back? What price will athletes willingly pay?
    What level of degenerate behavior will owners encourage to maximize their ROI? And if I don’t like what I see from the NHL at that point, yeah I could turn my back on the NHL product. Maybe find a college or younger team to follow. Who knows, they might even let me back on the ice.

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