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Can We At Least Get A Commitment

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Remember when the NHL’s ice surfaces were all painted with the simpering, “Thank You Fans” message after the last lockout? Here’s hoping fans remember it and say, “thanks, but no thanks” this fall, especially if fall without hockey stretches into November or December, which is when everyone figures the real pressure points for the players and the owners will come into play.

Surely with so much wealth and so much optimism surrounding the game, the game itself deserves the best effort from its owners and its players.

Because if the owners and their players don’t respect what’s been built enough to get the deal done, then why should the fans bother?

And so a suggestion as the clock ticks towards the Sept. 15 end of the collective bargaining agreement: How about a pledge from the owners that they will bargain through the end of the agreement and into the coming season?

The players have already said they are willing to do so.

So how about a commitment from the owners that they will not lock out the players and a similar commitment from the players that they will not strike?


Filed in: NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink


tuxedoTshirt's avatar

Because if the owners and their players don’t respect what’s been built enough to get the deal done, then why should the fans bother?

Because we actually love this sport D-bag, and you obviously don’t.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 08/10/12 at 12:41 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

The players have already repeatedly stated that they gave night intentions to strike, and they’ve stated that doing so would be all but suicidal.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/10/12 at 12:49 PM ET

awould's avatar

Look at ESPN trying to care about hockey…. cute.

Posted by awould on 08/10/12 at 01:10 PM ET

Matt Fry's avatar

Yes, but if the fans keep coming back over and over, this kind of thing will keep happening.  I think that’s the point he’s trying to make.  If you don’t have a buyer, you have nothing to sell.  If fans didn’t return, I’d think the NHL and NHLPA would make a huge effort to make it work. 

Here’s hoping they work it out while the season continues.

Posted by Matt Fry from Winnipeg on 08/10/12 at 02:19 PM ET


If the negotiations run out of time, then you need to ask the players why they didn’t start negotiating last winter when the NHL was offering to begin. There is a good reason, the players have no intention of negotiating. They want to run out the clock and dare the owners to suspend operations. Say what you will about Gary Bettman, he doesn’t offer idle threats and he doesn’t back down to intimidation.

Posted by timbits on 08/10/12 at 03:04 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

The players didn’t begin negotiating because the PA didn’t want to witness the same back-room betrayals and side deals which yielded the current CBA, and as the PA has repeatedly stated, there was no way that they could give a counter-proposal to the NHL without those independent audits of teams’ books, which the NHL didn’t produce until last week.

I don’t know if the NHL could have prepared those audits before the end of the playoffs anyway—it’s highly likely that they weren’t going to be available until July one way or another—and as the analysis of those numbers will form the backbone of the NHLPA’s counter-proposal, nothing would have happened until those numbers became available.

That’s how it was going to roll.

For that matter, the NHL could have made its CBA proposal public if they wanted to kick-start negotiations earlier. They chose not to do so.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/10/12 at 03:46 PM ET

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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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