Kukla's Korner Hockey
by George Malik on 09/21/12 at 12:58 AM ET
You hear it pretty regularly these days, and it bears repeating. The vast majority of players going through their second lockout in eight years, if not their third in eighteen, offer a simple rhetorical question: eight years ago, the NHL locked out its players and fans because the "system" was "broken," promising that they'd "fix" the economic issues harming the world's best league once and for all--and if they're saying that once again, who's to say that players and fans won't be hearing the same crap eight years from now?
Jarome Iginla's added his voice to the mix this morning, as noted by the Calgary Sun's Randy Sportak:
“Gary said last time, it was a deal that would work for everyone, be a win-win,” Iginla said Thursday after an informal session with more than a dozen other NHLers at WinSport. “If you had asked him, ‘Forecast the revenues and will it work?’ He’d have said, ‘Absolutely. This is perfect.’
“Now, we’re not talking 1% (back from the players). They’re talking 10% back, and that’s $300 million, and that doesn’t seem honest from where that was. So how can we trust them next time?”
Iginla's tired of the rhetoric, and wary of angering the people who pay his and his teammates' salaries:
“Even though I didn’t agree with it last time, you could see their point. This time, I don’t,” Iginla said. “It’s like Gary enjoys battling, enjoys the argument. We’ve got to get it fixed. Fans have been very good in the past, and we can’t just rely they’ll come back strong. I know I would be ticked off.”
To Iginla, if the players relent too easily, the league will ask for more concessions every time.
“It’s not a matter of us trying to get anything back from the owners. We’re trying to find a way to get a deal that, in five years, Gary won’t be coming back and saying, ‘The game is better than ever, but there’s still a few teams (struggling) and instead of 50%, we want you to take 40%,’ ” Iginla said.
“We’re not trying to win. We’re not trying to get anything back. We’re trying to find agreement — you hear the word fair — but it’s not a right or wrong. We realize we’re not going to win without giving anything back. We want to make sure next time, when you say this is a fair deal — which you said last time and we exceeded all expectations as a group together — we’re not in the same boat.
“You could say, ‘You guys make great money,’ and we understand that, but next time, they’ll say, ‘Why not 40% of $5 billion or whatever. It’s a lot of money, but it’s not like it’s going to fans or other good causes. It just goes to the owners’ pockets and back to the Maple Leafs or the Rangers.”
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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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