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Idiots

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

The owners are intractable. Last time around, they won a hard cap and a 24 percent rollback in salaries in an effort to achieve “cost certainty.” Now, they are bent on another huge victory, and they are again willing to blithely dismiss 1,230 games and the playoffs.

The players are nearly as stubborn. Last time around, their historically disorganized union collapsed and they were routed. They now stand firm behind their new chief, legendary sports-labor leader Donald Fehr, who proposes little or no change and is standing firm.

The two sides met again Tuesday, got nowhere and made no plans to meet again. They are idiots.

Major League Baseball, the NFL and the NBA negotiated new agreements last year. These were not easy deals to make but, in each case, there was some give, there was some take and there was some attention paid to strengthening each league from the bottom up.

The precedents are there in front of NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and his counterpart, Fehr. All the tools they need are out of the box. The only one they are using is the hammer.

read on

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

Comments

Navarath's avatar

This time around, I’ve definitely sided with the players. From the way I see it, they have to do something to stop this pattern of lockouts every time the CBA expires. If they collapse again, then nothing will ever stop it. The owners will lockout every time, cancel games, and squeeze the players more and more. I definitely don’t want the season to get cancelled, however I think we need to look at this in terms of 10 to 20 years down the road. I would much rather lose a year now, and have 20 years of labor peace if that is what it will result in.

Posted by Navarath on 10/04/12 at 07:42 AM ET

starsfan26's avatar

The precedents are there in front of NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and his counterpart, Fehr. All the tools they need are out of the box. The only one they are using is the hammer.

^ Good analogy.  This isn’t a negotiation, it’s a game of chicken played by two egomaniacs.  The “good of the game” is not even an issue…pathetic.

Posted by starsfan26 on 10/04/12 at 07:53 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

I fail to see how the players are “idiots” for taking a stand this time around.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/04/12 at 09:27 AM ET

Avatar

As much as I side with the players, the League had been ready to talk since the All-Star Game. I appreciate Fehr’s need to be thorough, there was some serious foot-dragging with regards to getting talks underway.

Posted by intikiwetrust on 10/04/12 at 10:11 AM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

tl;dr version: “Both sides should compromise”

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 10/04/12 at 10:13 AM ET

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The reason the NHL has stoppages so consistently while the other leagues tend not to is that the NHL doesn’t have that much at risk by having a stoppage.

The NFL has a humongous TV contract that is at risk were there no games.  MLB has a humongous TV contract.  The NBA has a pretty big TV contract.

The NHL?  Nothing.  6.6 million bucks a team in revenue.  Barely buys a top line player.

That’s just the reality here, unfortunately.  There are very, very few NHL teams whose operations net a significant profit.  Even the Wings pre-cap were a break even club unless they got into the second round of the playoffs.  Post cap they’ve made boatloads of money, of course, but are there 10 teams that make 10 mil a year from hockey ops?

That’s why it’s so easy for the NHL, as a collective of 30 ownership groups, to toss a season.  In all likelihood ~10 of those teams are losing money if a season happens.  Another ~10 are break even clubs at best.  Another ~5 make small profits.  The top ~5 make 15+ mil a year.

Heck, from a purely financial point of view if the NHL can break the NHLPA down to a 50-50 split at current revenue numbers you’re talking about an additional 7.7 million bucks per team per year in a new CBA.

What does that mean?  It means that over the course of a 6 year agreement every team making less than 46.2 million bucks a year from hockey ops will make every dime of revenue back from a lost season by the expiration of that deal.

How many clubs do you think make less than 46.2 million bucks a year from hockey ops?  25?  27?

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/04/12 at 10:24 AM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

HD, I totally agree with your post..

What does that mean?  It means that over the course of a 6 year agreement every team making less than 46.2 million bucks a year from hockey ops will make every dime of revenue back from a lost season by the expiration of that deal.
How many clubs do you think make less than 46.2 million bucks a year from hockey ops?  25?  27?
Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/04/12 at 11:24 AM ET

Hmmm… This has gotten the conspiracy theorist in me thinking. Actually, if this was a premeditated move by the owners or even an unintentional result of their lockout I wouldn’t be surprised.

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 10/04/12 at 11:25 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Posted by intikiwetrust on 10/04/12 at 11:11 AM ET

Foot dragging like the league getting Fehr 72,000 pages of independent financial informations on all 30 clubs that the league deemed “irrelevant”?  Like that kind of foot dragging?

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 10/04/12 at 12:16 PM ET

Avatar

Hmmm… This has gotten the conspiracy theorist in me thinking. Actually, if this was a premeditated move by the owners or even an unintentional result of their lockout I wouldn’t be surprised.

I don’t know any owners, I don’t have any sources of information or special access to anything that has been said or described in any BoG meeting.

In spite of that I will say this:  I would bet my life that something close to identical to that analysis has been studied by the NHL.  In certainly far greater detail with their access to the precise numbers in question, but at some point prior to this “lockout” they all sat down, pulled out a prepared folder, and studied exactly how far they had to drive the players to make back the money from a lost season by the end of the deal, what the best case/worst case results were, etc.

I can’t imagine people running a 3.3+ billion dollar industry doing one iota less.

Everybody knew what is happening now was going to happen, they knew it the day Fehr was hired and they almost had to know it within a year or two after the old CBA was settled.  All they needed was the numbers.

So no, I don;t think it’s a conspiracy theory at all… it’s just a plain old fashioned theory. smile

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/04/12 at 12:57 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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