Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
The Hockey News: You’re nearly two-thirds of the way through your first tour of team meetings. What has that process been like?
Paul Kelly: It’s been phenomenally interesting and informative. The beginning part of the process is pretty much an introductory thing, introducing myself and my background, how I view the roles and management of hockey, initial thoughts, ideas and goals I have for the association and the guys.
Then we go into a couple of important developments in the coming months, and we go from there into probably the most important part of it, which is interactive give-and-take with the players, and that goes on for about 45 minutes and covers a range of topics, (including) equipment, schedule, rules issues, health and safety issues.
from the Atlanta Business Chronicle,
A new revenue-sharing system helps those teams, with Atlanta receiving about $6 million in each of the first two years of the new collective bargaining agreement.
But fast forward three years later and that hard team cap on salaries is accelerating upwards and teams like Atlanta are not keeping pace at the top end of the team payroll spectrum.
Paul Kelly is the NHLPA’s third executive director in three years and he visited Atlanta on Monday (coincidentally to meet with the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning; teams prefer to meet on the road, he said, where there are fewer distractions).
With the NHL having won its hard salary cap the hard way, Kelly’s job very much is to drive revenues to keep players’ salaries moving up.
from Tripp Mickle at SportsBusiness Journal (paid sub.),
NHL Players’ Association Executive Director Paul Kelly has invited NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to attend and address players at the union’s summer meetings. The invitation is the first Bettman has received in 15 years as commissioner.
Kelly informally extended the invitation when he met Bettman for the first time this fall. He later repeated his invite when he spoke before the league’s board of governors Nov. 29. A written invitation to the commissioner followed in an e-mail early this month.
“I was pleased to be invited,” Bettman said in an e-mail. “We believe that this represents a constructive development in our relationship.”...
“In past years, my appearance at the board of governors or the commissioner’s appearance at one of our meetings would not have been an enjoyable event,” Kelly said. “The players now hold the same view I hold. It’s time to grow the revenues and look at new markets and work with each other instead of against each other.”
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
League sources told Sun Media yesterday that Paul Kelly, the newly appointed NHLPA executive director, has been telling players the number of regular-season games in Europe is going to rise dramatically.
Kelly has suggested the NHL increase its regular-season schedule to 84 games and don’t be surprised if those extra two games are held at European venues. The belief among players is there could be as many as 8-10 games per season in Europe in the next two or three years.
“It’s the only way that revenues can be grown,” said the league source. “They’ve pretty well tapped everything they can in North America. Europe has tremendous growth potential and the NHL wants to do something about it. The players are partners now and need to do their part.”
more and your weekly dose of NHL rumors and talk…
from Bob Duff of the Windsor Star,
They’ve made no friends in enemy uniforms and yet both men willingly put their careers and reputations on the line for their National Hockey League brothers.
Last year, Chelios took on NHLPA executive director Ted Saskin, accusing him of using unfair practices to gain the spot as the man in charge of the association.
Saskin was ultimately forced to resign and Paul Kelly recently replaced him.
A half century ago, Lindsay led the players in revolt against the owners, seeking to form a players’ association to fight against unfair practices implemented by NHL owners.
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
“I just think there’s going to be a steady, dramatic increase in visor usage,” said Kelly, hired by the NHLPA in October to replace ousted former NHLPA executive director Ted Saskin. “Players are getting the message that they should put a visor on, there are more young guys and European guys coming into the league, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 20 (percent) spike in the number of players wearing visors next year, and another 15 percent spike the year after that.
“Even left to its own natural evolution, visor use will become pretty much unanimous in a matter of two or three years.”
from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail,
Its members may not be able to skate, pass or shoot a puck without falling down but the NHL Players’ Association believes its soon-to-be-appointed, six-person advisory board will be an off-ice powerhouse, a dream team of support.
The NHLPA, with the help of Reilly Partners, a Chicago head-hunting firm, is presently assembling candidates to sit on a formal advisory that will be the first of its kind among the major professional sports unions.
The board will be composed of experts in the field of law, corporate affairs, finance, marketing, labour relations and player representation.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
I’ve been exchanging emails with NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly all day and I was on the phone with an NHL executive for one hour, seventeen minutes and 14 seconds and I’m still no closer to deciphering the NHL’s “tagging” rules than I was before the exercise….
Let’s take, for example, Exhibit 50.5 (e) (iv) (C) (2), shall we? It explains part of the tagging rule this way:
“In order for a Club to sign (a player) to a multi-year SPC after Dec. 1 of a season, the Club must have Payroll Room equal to or in excess of the Averaged Amount of the Player Salary and Bonuses for the remainder of such season. If, however,...
read on, but that was enough for me…
from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,
A professional hockey player and environmentalist David Suzuki make for strange breakfast companions, but their unlikely encounter in Calgary last year is greening dressing rooms throughout the NHL.
Since their meeting last fall, Andrew Ference, a Boston Bruins defenceman, has become the point man for the National Hockey League Players’ Association on environmental issues. His goal is to slow climate change by changing the mindset of his fellow players.
Friday, Ference and Suzuki will unite for a news conference in Toronto to unveil a partnership between the NHLPA and the David Suzuki Foundation. The two are teaming up to help offset the greenhouse gas emissions produced by NHL players whose jobs require them to travel by planes, trains, buses and cars.
From Jim Kelley at Sports Illustrated,
What comes as a shock to long-time observers, however, is that now the NHL Players’ Association wants to get involved, and not necessarily to fight off the suspensions that were handed down by Colin Campbell, the NHL’s Director of Hockey Operations, as well as the perceived threat of additional suspensions that were hinted at by Commissioner Gary Bettman and his deputy, Bill Daly.
Paul Kelly, who barely has found a chair that fits him as the NHLPA’s new executive director said recently that he’s “concerned” about the number of suspensions the Flyers have been given since the start of the season and that not only should the league take a tougher stance, but that his organization should “have a voice in the process.”
Given that he’s not dead, it would be wrong to say that former NHLPA boss Bob Goodenow is spinning in his grave over that one, but it’s not outside the realm of possibility that Kelly’s statement made his head turn. Criticism of Goodenow within and outside the PA often centered on how he handled on-ice or player-on-player violence. The perception (Goodenow argued it was unfair) was that the PA was quick to come to the defense of any perpetrator, but did next to nothing to protect the health, safety and long-term welfare of the player who was unduly or unfairly assaulted.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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