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CBA Negotiations Meeting Will Begin Shortly

added 2:04pm,

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Here’s a suggestion for both sides to chew on as they reach another critical moment in the dispute:

Making concessions to arrive at an equitable agreement should be seen as a necessary step in the negotiating process, not as a sign of weakness or wavering resolve.

Until they digest and absorb that basic lesson, nothing’s really going to change.

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added 2:16pm,

 

added 4:52pm,

 

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

Comments

perfection's avatar

I know I’ve seen this written previously, prob both by reporters in articles/tweets and commenters on KK… but if a deal comes out of these meetings - where the two guys HIRED and PAID to make a deal with one another are basically banned from the room for being too childish - I think there needs to be some serious soul searching by both the league and the union. Talk about monumental failure…

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 12/05/12 at 02:22 PM ET

Paul's avatar

In a way I agree perfection, but will hold final judgement until we see what kind of deal is made, if it is.

Those two can still be heavily involved but regarding Bettman, does anyone want him to be the face of the NHL?

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 12/05/12 at 02:24 PM ET

perfection's avatar

The owners do clearly Paul. Say what you want about his failures, from their perspective he’s dramatically increased both profits and parity in his tenure. And what’s more, while he may appear as the “face” externally, to them he’s basically a whipping boy. He absorbs all of the criticism so that the owners receive basically none. If the commissioner were more likable, attention may begin to turn elsewhere… like towards the BILLIONAIRES (who have sports teams essentially as hobbies) behind this nonsense.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 12/05/12 at 02:42 PM ET

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he’s dramatically increased both profits and parity in his tenure

If I am to believe everything the owners have told me about this lockout, then this can’t possibly be true. Revenues are at an all-time high, but everyone is losing money.

Parity one the ice was never an issue, it was alwasy about revenue and that parity doesn’t exist. I don’t recall the league having an issue with any teams dominating on the ice prior the last lockout with the last back-to-back winner being Detroit in 1998. There are surely more mediocre teams, but just as many terrible teams as before.

The billionaires can still hire a new lightning rod to draw criticism, but it is also no skin off their backs to cast a new villain every few years and bask in the adulation of having done “the right thing”. The face of the league doesn’t actually have to be a bad guy either. You could set up a league Commissioner who does the glad handing , trophy handing over, cutting of All-Star Game ribbons and handling of hockey operations and have a league Chief Operating Officer who acts as the owners representative in all things financial. They would still have a bad guy for the public to hate, but not have to have the Stanley Cup booed in any market that follows the sport.

Posted by hockey1919 from mid-atlantic on 12/05/12 at 03:35 PM ET

perfection's avatar

I don’t think anyone is saying EVERYONE is losing money. Basically a few teams are losing money and a bunch of teams want more. They see the lockout as a mere negotiating tactic, not the “nuclear option” the media makes it out to be. The elephant in the room is that just like the last lockout, everybody knows that this will end with the owners basically getting whatever they want. The players are trying to minimize that damage, but the conclusion is essentially forgone and I think the owners would at least partly credit Bettman with this reality.

And to me, parity isn’t so much about how many great - mediocre - terrible teams there are at any given time, but rather how this changes from year to year. I think the idea was to give every owner, player, GM and fan HOPE that no matter how bad their team is now, they still have a chance to win the cup next season or the season after that. While Detroit only won two cups in a row in the 90’s, they were vying for it every year during that period against pretty much the same cast of other great teams. Now you have teams, like the Blackhawks and the Penguins, going from the basement to the cup in a matter of two seasons. Because once you get one or two top draft picks, the cap has made it much easier to compliment those picks and have an entirely new team within a couple of seasons.

And while I get your point about Bettman, I really think our view of him and the owners’ view of him is entirely different. As a whole, they have definitely gained during his reign. I don’t think they give a crap if people boo him at the all-star game or cup presentation. In fact, they probably chuckle at it just like I do.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 12/05/12 at 04:06 PM ET

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Those two can still be heavily involved but regarding Bettman, does anyone want him to be the face of the NHL?

I don’t care if Gary is or isn’t the face of the NHL. However, I support most of the NHL policies initiated in the past 20 years. I support national expansion, increased marketing and television program. I support the hard cap and fixed cost approach. I like the parity we have today and wish to see it continue. I like the expansion of international players in the league, the crack down on obstruction ( I wish it would last for an entire season and playoff, however).  I like the playoff format and think the new regional approach to conferences is a great idea. I like that NHL has a dedicated cable carrier that loves hockey. I think the NBC deal is a good one. I think the next Canadian contract will be huge, if we have a league.

What I hope is the next commissioner continues the policies of the past 20 years and continue to innovate and evolve the NHL.

Posted by timbits on 12/05/12 at 04:58 PM ET

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I think the owners would at least partly credit Bettman with this reality.

I have no doubt that the owners are happy with Bettman as long as they win, but the thing is that not talent to saying ‘No’ and cancelling a season if you don’t get what you wat.  If you’re giving a guy $8M a season anyone would be able to do what Bettman’s doing.  What the owners should want is a guy who can get what the owners want withouth infuriating the fanbase and without losing a single game, much less however many games have been lost over the course of these three lockouts.

Posted by Garth on 12/05/12 at 04:59 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I like the parity we have today and wish to see it continue. I like the expansion of international players in the league, the crack down on obstruction ( I wish it would last for an entire season and playoff, however).

Some good and agreeable points in the whole comment, just picking out this stuff.

Why is forcing economic parity better?  If it is better, then why is it kind of half-assed?

The expansion of international players has been great. Sadly, that expansion seems to be reversing itself lately

It took a decade and a half to crack down on obstruction and half that time for it to creep back into the game at nearly the same levels it was before. Of the 20 years we’re talking about, we’ve had, what, 4 years where we were at a pretty good spot where penalties were being called at “just the right pace”?

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 12/05/12 at 05:23 PM ET

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I don’t think anyone is saying EVERYONE is losing money. Basically a few teams are losing money and a bunch of teams want more

Okay EVERYONE is hyperbole, but the league is saying only 8 teams are operating at a profit based on Forbes best guess if I recall correctly. Or the teams are doing great and making money and we just had a lockout for the past 3 months so that the wealthy can get even wealthier by going against the spirit of the deals they just negotiated less than four months ago.

I think the idea was to give every owner, player, GM and fan HOPE that no matter how bad their team is now, they still have a chance to win the cup next season or the season after that.

Phoenix, Florida, Carolina, Tampa, Columbus, NY Islanders, Dallas and Anaheim had as much hope under the last CBA as this one. I think the last CBA hurt the bottom teams by forcing them to spend money for nothing than actually helping them. They could have saved some of that money and spent it wisely once they accumulated draft picks, instead they acumulated losses on the ice and off.

Blackhawks going from the cup and then being dismantled around the edges in a matter of two seasons. Because the cap has made it necessary to have an entirely new team within a couple of seasons because you aren’t allowed to pay for success.

I think you may have meant this. The Blackhawks rise is predicated on Bill Wirtz no longer running the team, not the CBA. The Penguins new arena and five horrible season topped off with a lottery not the CBA which caused then to ship out Staal.

Posted by hockey1919 from mid-atlantic on 12/05/12 at 05:37 PM ET

perfection's avatar

I think part of the problem with penalties really just comes down to the human nature factor of the refs themselves. you see it in every sport with human refs, as things start to matter more, the less they want to be a part of the conclusion. Their perspective on what is and isn’t a penalty simply changes… and not always consciously. I realize the league “cracks” down on stuff here and there, but the tendency for refs to not call the playoffs the same as the regular season or even overtime the same as regulation speaks to human nature.

Other examples - in football, they basically never call pass interference on a hail mary in the last second of the game. Or in baseball, all of a sudden the strike zone, which has been consistant all game suddenly widens because there’s a full count. These conditional alterations I think often have more to do with the human factor than the league mandate factor.

none of this is to say they can’t try and keep obstruction out of the game. This is more about calling playoffs the same as the regular season. I don’t think it’ll ever happen. And it’ll always take something bordering on criminal (or an accidental puck over the glass… one of the worst rules in my opinion) to get a penalty in a double OT.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 12/05/12 at 05:44 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

I have to agree.  IF a deal DOES get made, then WHY are the owners paying Bettman 8 MILLION a YEAR to be commish?

Then again, if one doesn’t…

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 12/05/12 at 07:41 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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