Kukla's Korner

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Some Of The Issues

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

It strikes me there are two fundamental obstacles right now to getting a deal done.
 
The first is that Bettman and the owners want too much too quickly, a significant and immediate reduction in the players' share of Hockey Related Revenue that would result in a first-year pay cut of no less than 12 per cent, and perhaps more than that. Many (outside of the NHLPA anyway) don't dispute the notion that the NHL and NHLPA are destined, eventually, to go from the old 43-57 share arrangement to around 50-50, but the NHL seems hell-bent on getting there immediately with no consideration of transitioning to soften the blow to the players. For me, the ultimate issue is not going to 50-50 as much as it is how you get there. It took seven years for the old CBA to swing in the players' favor, why does it have to ruthlessly and awkwardly snap back the owners' way in one fell swoop?
 
The second roadblock is Fehr and the NHLPA clinging steadfastly to the notion that -- upon expiry of a CBA that has been very good to them and faced with the old lockout-gun-to-the-head approach -- they're going to escape this conflict without any tangible reduction in the dollars they earn....

continued 

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

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Here’s another example of lazy, ‘Shoalts-ian’ commentary.

Many (outside of the NHLPA anyway) don’t dispute the notion that the NHL and NHLPA are destined, eventually, to go from the old 43-57 share arrangement to around 50-50, but the NHL seems hell-bent on getting there immediately with no consideration of transitioning to soften the blow to the players.

The problem is MacKenzie’s position is factually untrue.  A recent NHL offer phased in reductions to a 50-50 split by the third or fourth year IIRC.  The only offer to which MacKenzie’s statement actually applies was the NHL’s very first one.  As far as I am aware every subsequent offer from the NHL has had some form of gradual decline in players share over time.

A further read of MacKenzie’s column brings another rather startlingly poor insight from him:

“The owners are convinced that after a month or two of missed pay cheques, or faced with the prospect of losing the season, the players will break ranks.”

I can’t possibly imagine who would have told MacKenzie such an obviously stupid thing.  It’s such an implausible suggestion I honestly think MacKenzie’s just made the whole thing up.  Either that or he’s the most naive guy in the history of black ink.

He does make one cogent point here when he says:

“I mean, if the lockout goes on all season long, the players will have given up 100 per cent of their income in a failed bid to protect 12 per cent of it.”

That, at least, is spot on.  This is why I don’t quite get where the NHLPA thinks the endgame is here.  They aren’t going to get 57% of HRR under any definitions of the term in the next CBA.  That simply won’t happen.  The basic math of their situation just doesn’t work.  There’s literally no reasonable outcome that will ever get them back even a dime of the money in wages they are giving up by holding so strictly to their old deal.

That’s not to imply I believe the NHLPA should just take any old offer… but they just cannot let the whole season go.  It makes literally no sense at all for them to do so.  If the NHL won’t go above 50-50… them’s the breaks.

I mean, let’s say that after a lost season the NHLPA talks the NHL into going 47-53 in favor of the players.  That would never happen, I’m just trying to present the most positive case imaginable.

Let’s use an approximate number for the HRR pie.  3 B for ease of computing.

A 53% HRR cut under current definitions with one year missed over a span of 6 years pays out 7.95 B to the players over those 6 years.

If the players just took the 50-50 split and got paid for all 6 years they’d take home 9 B.

Even if the NHLPA got their old 57% of HRR reinstated they’d only get 8.55 B over the course of the 6 years.

There’s literally no reasonable outcome where a season is lost in which the players don’t take an absolute bath compared to just signing the 50-50 deal immediately and sucking it up.

 

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/12/12 at 05:01 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.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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