Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the CP at TSN,
The NHL's collective bargaining talks are set to restart with a session that is likely to run through the weekend.
The league and NHL Players' Association have blocked off Friday, Saturday and Sunday for meetings in New York after spending more than two weeks away from the bargaining table.
The talks resume with the scheduled Oct. 11 start to the regular season drawing near. A deal would likely have to be struck by the middle of next week in order for the league to avoid the cancellation of meaningful games.
NEW YORK (September 27, 2012) – The National Hockey League announced today the cancellation of the remainder of the 2012 preseason schedule.
The cancellation of the preseason schedule was necessary because of the absence of a Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NHL Players’ Association and the NHL.
from Adam Proteau of The Hockey News,
Duration Of Agreement: Seven years.
1. Players’ Hockey-Related Revenue split drops one percentage point in each season of the CBA.
Rather than demanding drastic and immediate clawbacks that make the players’ association bristle, the NHL could allow players to slowly ease into a 50/50 split over the life of the labor deal. The bite of the reduction will sting NHLers less significantly, while still getting the owners their obsessed-over halfsies.
2. Dollar-For-Dollar Luxury Tax implemented, with all funds directed to improving revenue-sharing for small-market teams.
In return for giving up more of the HRR pie, players should receive some acknowledgement from owners they want to be part of the long-term solution to ensure nobody has to endure this lockout disgrace ever again. The way to do that is the way NHLPA executive director Don Fehr suggested in the union’s first CBA proposal: increased revenue sharing via a luxury tax for big-market teams that wish to exceed the cap.
from Michale Grange of Sportsnet,
The question, ultimately, may be who or what the family of Derek Boogaard deems unworthy of suing?
The teams he fought for, who knew of his drug problem and allegedly contributed to it?
The affiliated medical professionals that supplied him with the pain killers and sleeping pills that became part of his daily routine until the night of his death?
The administrators of the NHL and NHLPA's joint substance abuse program where Boogaard was treated but was never close to cured before being sent back to work?
The NHL, who created a work environment where the former Minnesota Wild and New York Rangers enforcer could continually put his health at risk?
Last Friday, nearly 18 months after the death of his beloved giant of a son, Len Boogaard, a career RCMP officer, concluded an investigation fueled by tears with a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles against the National Hockey League Players' Association and one of its lawyers.
The specifics of the 13-page claim may well obscure the scope of the legal and ethical issues that surround it.
from Jeff Z. Klein of the New York Times,
from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,
Much of the debate centred on Devellano calling the players "cattle," although he also referred to himself as livestock. But the real money quote came seconds earlier to Island Sports News reporter Scott Harrigan.
Here is the exchange:
SH: "What's with all the money flying around before the lockout, when all the fans see is huge contracts to, for example, Sutter, Weber, Myers, Lucic? Let's take for example the offer sheet Philly proposed to Weber in the face of Nashville owner. What message are they trying to send?"
JD: "Listen Scott, there is a hard cap in place, as we all know. You can't go over that. Period. If [Shea] Weber gets this much, then another player gets less. Now does that mean it's right for another team to do that? My answer is this: They [Philadelphia Flyers] operated within the CBA [collective bargaining agreement] and it's totally legit to do. Having said that, I will tell you there is an unwritten rule that you don't do that. But they did and, just like everything else in life, some people are great to deal with, some aren't. If you are asking me if it's right, I would say there is, again, an unwritten rule ... we all know it in the NHL. But not everyone follows it."
I almost fell of the couch reading that paragraph and can only imagine the reactions of Bettman, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly, NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr and their legal posses.
I'm not a lawyer (thank goodness). But the consequences of that quote are potentially enormous.
from Wayne Scanlan of the Ottawa Citizen,
What would it take to get some traction in talks? Is there even the slightest chance Friday’s meeting between the NHL and the NHLPA, on “non-core economic issues” might provide at least some consensus, on any little thing at all (e.g. The sky is blue. Swiss league uniforms are tacky, etc.)?
I put the question to a professional mediator, Lynne Villemaire of Roundtable Mediation and Arbitration Services in Ottawa. Villemaire is a University of Ottawa graduate with a background in dispute resolution, including collective bargaining.
“The fact they’re going in Friday with an agenda that is much less contentious ... something more neutral and probably on subjects that are much easier to discuss and negotiate on is, I think personally, a fantastic strategy,” Villemaire said.
While no one is advised to hold his or her breath on Friday until white smoke rises from a new deal, the big issues should more easily be solved if there is agreement first on smaller items, such as arbitration, player contracts and Olympic participation. For example, if the NHL threw the players a bone on the Olympics, would that not help rebuild trust?
"It's not ideal If I have to miss a year, I hear sometimes it benefits the older players, but I don't think it really does. I think you have to be consistently playing, being active and all that.
"You usually train for two, two and-a-half months in the summer and then maintain (heading into training camp). But we're going on three months of training right now and it kind of gets groundhog day-ish."
-Todd Bertuzzi of the Detroit Red Wings. More from Bertuzzi via Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News.
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