Bringing in Heavy Reinforcements

Further evidence the NHLPA isn’t as united as has been reported is evidenced by the fact that Mario Lemieux has been involved in behind the scences posturing of the players union.This morning’s edition of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review in Pittsburgh hit newsstands with news of Mario Lemieux attempting to bridge the gap of “philosophical differences” in a meeting this week in Toronto with Maple Leafs’ enforcer Tie Domi.

Karen Price, of the Trib., reports that Lemieux did indeed fly to Toronto earlier this week to meet with Tie Domi, who Lemieux cites is “very influential” within the union. Lemieux, who injured his back during an informal workout early last week, was quoted as saying;

“I’m trying to do what’s best for the game in general-maybe trying to get my point across and talk to some different people, making sure that everybody understands what’s at stake here and that the game is more important than anything else at this point.”

Lemieux continues: “…I think the guys understand-and they’re starting to realize-what’s at stake here. Both sides have to give a little bit, and hopefully they all realize that you have to make a deal that allows everybody to stay competitive and make money.”

Does the big guy have any strategies for coming to a resolution to solve the labor impasse? It doesn’t appear so unless you want to count determination and desire. “These things, you just have to stay in the room until you make a deal.”

Mario is said he believes there is a “50-50” chance of playing hockey this season and that games would not start for “three or four weeks” after an agreement is reached.

Looking at this situation from the outside it appears the players union is hardly as unified as what is being said in the media. If Domi is as influential as Mario says, and Domi and Mario met, I believe some of the players are teetering on the line between what the union is putting forth and what the rest of the players are saying.

Do you all feel the same way? Is this an indication the union has some cracks? OR is this nothing more than a friendly meeting to discuss the present situation?

4 Responses to Bringing in Heavy Reinforcements

  1. rojoke says:

    I definitely think the PA has some cracks. How big those cracks may be, that will determine if the league gets their salary cap or has to settle for a luxury tax.

    Someone from the players side, I think it was Georges Laraque, said that the players were unanimous in their stance against the cap. If you go back to in the history of organized labour, I don’t you’ll find a single instance of any union membership being unanimous in anything. The union reps might be unanimous, but I doubt the entire 700+ players are 100% against it. Even the guys who said they weren’t and retracted what they said, that will tell you there’s at least a few that would listen to the idea.

  2. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    The proof there are cracks is in the fact that the Union refuses to put the idea of a cap up for vote. Agent Dennis Potvin suggests it would be a cake walk in favor of accepting a cap. Goodenow would likely lose his job thus the fear in doing it.

    There still will be a deal. The stakes are too high.

    I belive Mario was in TO to work with domi although it would have been easier and more stealth over the phone.

  3. CaptainModano says:

    Hard to say exactly how influential Mario will be in this whole thing…

    He represents both sides, really, and some feel he’s the reason his own team’s on the verge of bankruptcy.

    Maybe he’ll give himself another pat on the back if his actions help get the NHL started up again…..and another raise.

  4. 19Yzerman says:

    Unanimous?? By definition of the word neither side has it.

    unanimity interms of % I would think could go to the players over the owners since I think that there is a higher % of owners that truely don’t care if they have a cap or not. It is debatable with no real way to establish for sure either way.

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