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Doan Gets Through To Bettman

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Sources report it was a one-hour meeting last Saturday attended by only Bettman, NHL attorney Bob Batterman and the Coyotes’ universally respected Shane Doan that broke the logjam over the critical issue regarding the 2013-14 cap number.

Doan, who left money on the table as a free agent this summer to remain in Phoenix, explained that the league’s proposed $62.5M — increased at that point from the original $60M — would disrupt the lives of players and their families who would be forced to move because of trades and buyouts that would not otherwise take place under the union’s more forgiving $64.3M transition number.

The Coyotes’ winger convinced Bettman and Batterman that the issue wasn’t about financial gain for the players, but on the contrary, for players would inevitably suffer greater escrow loss via a higher cap. It was, Doan said, about family life.

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Paul From Cali's avatar

would disrupt the lives of players and their families who would be forced to move because of trades and buyouts that would not otherwise take place under the union’s more forgiving $64.3M transition number.

Seriously??!!  If Doan wants to see disrupted lives he should take a drive around any city or small town in America.  Kudos to him for getting Bettman to budge and help get the lockout settled but I’m SICK of entitled athletes who whine over millions of dollars while the majority of Americans struggle to put food on the table and clothes on their kids’ backs.  It’s that kind of attitude that precipitated the lockout to begin with.

Posted by Paul From Cali on 01/10/13 at 12:38 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Does anybody believe that Doan went in and gave Gary Bettman and Bob Batterman puppy dog eyes and they relented on something that wasn’t that horribly important to them anyway out of the kindness of their Doan-melted hearts?

Frank Luntz must be sporting a half-chub from the thought of people swallowing that.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 01/10/13 at 12:43 PM ET

henrymalredo's avatar

would disrupt the lives of players and their families who would be forced to move because of trades and buyouts that would not otherwise take place under the union’s more forgiving $64.3M transition number.
Seriously??!!  If Doan wants to see disrupted lives he should take a drive around any city or small town in America.  Kudos to him for getting Bettman to budge and help get the lockout settled but I’m SICK of entitled athletes who whine over millions of dollars while the majority of Americans struggle to put food on the table and clothes on their kids’ backs.  It’s that kind of attitude that precipitated the lockout to begin with.
Posted by Paul From Cali on 01/10/13 at 11:38 AM ET

So because there are people that have it worse, NHL players shouldn’t fight for what’s important for them and their families?  Thats a rather selfish attitude.

Posted by henrymalredo from Lansing on 01/10/13 at 12:43 PM ET

Soupsnake's avatar

athletes have a right to stability in the lives. Just because they make more than you doesn’t mean they like having their family uprooted and moved every season. I think Doan made a respectable argument.

Just look at Brad Stuart and all the family crap he has had to deal with as a result of being traded from one side of the country to another.

Posted by Soupsnake from Canton, Mi on 01/10/13 at 12:43 PM ET

Soupsnake's avatar

their lives*

Posted by Soupsnake from Canton, Mi on 01/10/13 at 12:44 PM ET

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I’m SICK of entitled athletes who whine over millions of dollars while the majority of Americans struggle to put food on the table and clothes on their kids’ backs.  It’s that kind of attitude that precipitated the lockout to begin with.

You’re picking the wrong sport to call out athletes as entitled.

Millions of dollars will mitigate, but they certainly not eliminate a lot of realities they still face as fathers and husbands. You can’t throw money at EVERY problem.

In some of the freelance writing I’ve done I’ve come to know a few players, and none of their faces ever light up when they discuss being traded or bought out. Yeah they make a ton of cash, but they’re still human beings.

Posted by intikiwetrust on 01/10/13 at 12:45 PM ET

shanetx's avatar

I hate this argument.  Sure, the average NHL player makes more money than the average person.  They certainly out-earn me as a 32 year old business owner by a wiiiide margin.  But I’ve got 30-40 more years of work ahead of me in my career.  A 32 year old hockey player may, if they are lucky, not be at the end but they can sure see it coming.

Posted by shanetx from Floydada, Texas on 01/10/13 at 01:16 PM ET

TheFreak's avatar

Yeah they make a ton of cash, but they’re still human beings.

I’m not singling you out or want to sound like i am picking on you about this - i just have an honest question in general about this: Do you (and others) apply this sentiment to the owners as well? Can they make a lot of money too?

I took no sides in the lockout, the free market took it’s course and two sides negotiated and found common ground. I am all for people earning as much as they can.

Posted by TheFreak on 01/10/13 at 01:18 PM ET

Avatar

whine over millions of dollars

Good reading comprehension.

Posted by Garth on 01/10/13 at 01:18 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Rich people aren’t allowed to be unhappy about the same kinds of things that would make not-rich people unhappy because it steals from them a bit of the luster and motivation of becoming rich.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 01/10/13 at 01:30 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) My Opinion has Been, The NHL will Make their money, The Players will make their money, The Lawyers, Bettman, Fehr & all the owners will make their Money so I don’t give a Rats Ass about whether anyone is Inconvenienced by what happens due to trades or Buyouts.

As My Dad told me many, many , many times as a Kid “Son like isn’t fair, you better get used to it”

The People that I am happy for that Hockey is Back are the fans, People who work at the arena, Bars, Nightclubs & Restaurants around those same arenas that took it in the ass during the lockout through no fault of their own

Posted by Evilpens on 01/10/13 at 01:31 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

blows my mind how much people attach money to who people are and that money fixes everything.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 01/10/13 at 01:31 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

And yes Freak, it absolutely does.  However, when the owners, the ones with TONS of money vs. just a lot want to sign contracts like they’re going out of style, then ask for 20% back.  When you come out and tell players they’re just cattle eating at the owners ranch.. you get the point.  It doesn’t sit well.  There’s an attitude accompanying their success that’s dog eat dog, servant and master.  I imagine no human being likes to feel like they are under the thumb and at the whim of someone who happens to be in a more influential position than yourself.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 01/10/13 at 01:34 PM ET

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Can they make a lot of money too?

They do.  That’s why they are able to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to own sports teams as a hobby.

Posted by Garth on 01/10/13 at 01:37 PM ET

Avatar

I’m not singling you out or want to sound like i am picking on you about this - i just have an honest question in general about this: Do you (and others) apply this sentiment to the owners as well? Can they make a lot of money too?

I took no sides in the lockout, the free market took it’s course and two sides negotiated and found common ground. I am all for people earning as much as they can.

I’m in favor of fairness. I think the owners are plenty entitled to make their billions, but I don’t condone the hypocrisy and dishonesty as a means of leverage over the players.

Between handing out these crazy contracts they were in such a hurry to put an end and some clubs misreporting their finances, I’m happy to see the players come away with more than just the shirts on their backs.

Granted, I’m none too pleased with Fehr dragging this out into a war of attrition (and I’m sure the union isn’t full of boy scouts, either), but I’m not surprised. I think the writing had been on the wall leading up to the work stoppage that this was going to be an ugly lockout. It had to happen if both sides were going to come away happy.

Posted by intikiwetrust on 01/10/13 at 01:39 PM ET

Paul From Cali's avatar

Figured I’d ruffle some feathers.  I have no problem with athletes or owners for that matter making as much money as they can.  Lord I wish I had that kind of income and if I did I’d fight for every penny.

What pisses me off, in this country with the economy continuing to struggle and millions of people out of work and out of their homes we still have to put up with pro sports team owners and players fighting over millions of dollars.  The problem really wasn’t what Doan did, but it’s more that it’s been made public.  The lockout would have been settled with or without Doan’s “influence” so the act itself was meaningless.

The entire mess sends the wrong message to the fans and this is just one line of that message.  What the 3 work stoppages in sports the last 2 years (NFL, NBA, and now NHL) tells the fans is that the professionals on and off the fields of play care more about money then they do about their respective sports and the fans of those sports.  That’s what irks me.

Posted by Paul From Cali on 01/10/13 at 01:42 PM ET

Avatar

What the 3 work stoppages in sports the last 2 years (NFL, NBA, and now NHL) tells the fans is that the professionals on and off the fields of play care more about money then they do about their respective sports and the fans of those sports.  That’s what irks me.

That’s the brutal nature of any work stoppage. When the MTA worker’s union shut down it’s operations a few years ago—RIGHT before Christmas—MILLIONS of people couldn’t get around or out of New York due to train and subway service stopping. Businesses and schools shut down, pre-Christmas shopping revenue plummeted, and the city was basically at a standstill.

Don’t think I heard anyone call MTA workers selfish then, but I’d say the only difference is the amount of money the NHL/PA was arguing over. That’s the underbelly of collective bargaining—the people who depend on the business in question wind up being the collateral damage.

Posted by intikiwetrust on 01/10/13 at 01:52 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Lord I wish I had that kind of income and if I did I’d fight for every penny.

Agreed.

we still have to put up with pro sports team owners and players fighting over millions of dollars.

Wait, what? Didn’t you just say that you would do just this?

The problem really wasn’t what Doan did, but it’s more that it’s been made public.

It cracks me the hell up that it got written specifically because people would love to believe that a heartfelt plea from Doan for compassion is what changed the minds of Bettman and Batterman. I love that it gave them a way to “lose gracefully” on an issue that wasn’t that important to them and gives we poor dumb fans a way to cheer on our heroes, the players, as the ones who finally got through to them.

It’s hilarious theater and well-written to boot. I guess that’s what we pay for though.

 

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 01/10/13 at 01:52 PM ET

Avatar

shanetx not too pick on you but your position really does not hold water.  There is nothing stopping a hockey player from pursuing a second career once their playing days are finished.  So regardless of how much they make during hockey it is up to them as individuals to provide for themselves and families as best they can after they finish playing, the same as it is for every person out there to make the best choices in their power. 

The money that was batted around by both sides makes them all appear greedy (players and owners), but it is what the market will bare.  If fans are really wanting to put them in their place then don’t spend $ on the product now that it is coming back.  But by doing so you deprieve yourself of the sport you love and run the risk of it collapsing.

No fans are happy, rightfully so, but to di

Posted by Colwen19 on 01/10/13 at 01:56 PM ET

clownfat's avatar

“...while the majority of Americans struggle to put food on the table and clothes on their kids’ backs.”

If you really think this is true, and you really think we have it bad you should maybe travel the world a bit more. The US and Canada are not poor countries where the majority of people struggle.

As always, it is all relative.

Posted by clownfat on 01/10/13 at 01:59 PM ET

Guilherme's avatar

If you really think this is true, and you really think we have it bad you should maybe travel the world a bit more. The US and Canada are not poor countries where the majority of people struggle.

Yep.

Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 01/10/13 at 02:04 PM ET

Nathan's avatar

Do you (and others) apply this sentiment to the owners as well? Can they make a lot of money too?

I took no sides in the lockout, the free market took it’s course and two sides negotiated and found common ground. I am all for people earning as much as they can.

Posted by TheFreak on 01/10/13 at 12:18 PM ET

Of course the owners can make a lot of money. But the (alleged) argument Doan made wasn’t about the owners or players being able to make more or less money. Rather, it was about an unexpected symptom that would come of a lower cap number in year two. With escrow, the dollars will be what they’ll be. The larger cap number will allow teams to keep players they may have otherwise been forced to buy out or trade for the cap space, thus allowing those players to avoid having to move themselves and their families.

There is no analogous situation the owners have to deal with.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 01/10/13 at 02:53 PM ET

WingsFanInBeanLand's avatar

I just thank the little eight pounder that this wasn’t Arosby.  There would be no shortage of slerp-a-derp from the media had it been him saving the season, curing AIDS, sending man to the moon, etc.

Posted by WingsFanInBeanLand from where free agents no longer dare. on 01/10/13 at 03:56 PM ET

YzermanZetterberg's avatar

There is no analogous situation the owners have to deal with.

Perhaps if an owner had a mistress, he might have to move her to less expensive living quarters and/or buy her less lavish gifts if his pool of funds was significantly reduced.

smile

Posted by YzermanZetterberg on 01/10/13 at 04:07 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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