Dissention in the ranks?

The NHL Players’ Association says it will never accept a salary cap for its members, and that was reiterated on Thursday in light of remarks made by 20-year NHL veteran Steve Thomas.In an interview with The Score sports network, Thomas initially suggested that the league and Player’s Association could learn from examples taken from the National Basketball Association and National Football League when it comes to discussing a new collective bargaining agreement.

“The fact that football and basketball both have a salary cap…we can learn from how the day-to-day operations of those two entities work out and try and find some kind of a common ground between what they’re going through and what we have right now,” he said.

Thomas later released a statement through the NHL Players’ Association, saying his remarks were taken out of context.

“I never have and never will support a salary cap and any reports that say otherwise are totally inaccurate,” the statement said. “I have always believed that a marketplace is the best system for our sport and I still believe that today. NHLPA members will never accept a salary cap.”

The NHL says it needs what it calls “cost certainty,” but the union says each of the six league proposals they’ve received include conditions that amount to a salary cap.

Thomas was in Toronto appearing with other players at a charity event organized by another former Leaf, Doug Gilmour.

Thomas played last season with Detroit but the Red Wings have not offered him a new deal.

Last October, the NHLPA propose a system back on Oct. 1 that included a luxury tax, revenue sharing, a one-time five per cent rollback in salaries and some changes to the entry-level system.

The current collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and NHL Players’ Association expires Sept. 15.

Current Leaf forward Joe Nieuwendyk said salaries are already starting to fall and that proves the current system is “starting to work.”

“Fifty-million five-year deals, those things aren’t happening any more,” said Nieuwendyk, who in July re-signed with the Leafs in a one-year, $3-million deal. “Players are taking less in certain markets to play and to me, that shows you that things are becoming more responsible.”

Players are already bracing for a potentially long lockout.

“The way things are going right now, both sides aren’t going to budge,” said Leafs winger Darcy Tucker.

Free agent centre Eric Lindros said he’ll consider going back to school to pick up some university credits if the season doesn’t start on time.

“Hopefully, there will be a start to a season,” he said.

The league and players will hold talks in Ottawa next week and a week later in Montreal.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story.asp?id=95485

Is Steve Thomas’s initial statement the underlying beliefs of many other (i.e., majority) hockey players? Or, is it just an aberration?

His initial statement shows the importance, for the NHLPA, to not have players speak their minds because it will weaken their strength in respect to the owners due to the potential ramifications of having a union that is not fully cohesive. The same can be said of the owners. If the owners do not behave in a cohesive manner they will once again lose in the battle against the players. The group that blinks first in this battle of wills will go down in defeat. And I, as a devout hockey fan, am willing to see a work stoppage only if it achieves cost certainty.

Steve Thomas’s renouncement shows the NHLPA desires that the players are to be automatons without an intellect and reasoning capacity of their own. It is too dangerous for them to have a personal will, so they require a bolshevised-collective will. They must only be allowed to spew out the rhetoric promulgated by the Union, which is the messianic quality of the free and unfettered marketplace. As stated before, I wish to know the true unadulterated beliefs of the hockey players in regards to amelioration of the CBA. Do they actually believe in what they are saying in reference to the marketplace? (Do not misconstrue this statement as an attack on all unions; it only refers to the esteem that I have towards the players union).

And finally, how ignorant and stupid does Joe Nieuwendyk think the fans are. The only reason why salaries have gone down is that the players realize that their will be a reorientation of the salary structure in the NHL and because of the uncertainty revolving around the potential statutes of the new CBA.

Questions?


34 Responses to Dissention in the ranks?

  1. Darkhorse says:

    Okay, bottom line…the league desperately and I mean DESPERATELY needs a salary cap. The players’ union is ridiculously bullheaded on this matter. The fact that the players receive 75% of the profit is downright crazy! That business model doesn’t work anywhere in the world! I know what many of you are thinking as you read this. You probably think I’m a fan of some halfwit team like the Predators or Bluejackets….or even the undeserving flames (but that’s another argument,) but I’m a fan of the huge payroll Avalanche. In fact, I’m a huge fan. So why do I want a salary cap? Well, look at baseball. Even the Yankees players probably secretly feel as if they win unfairly. It’s great when an owner wants to win, and I greatly respect that, but when there is no evening of the playing field as in the NFL and NBA, things get out of whack. Every year, Colorado, Detroit, Toronto, Dallas and other big market teams compete against each other…but essentially only each other to win the cup. They spend and they spend some more to do it. Colorado used to never sign free agents cold turkey before Paul and Teemu. They traded talent to get talent…a worthy way of competition. However, other big teams simply spend to their hearts content and force teams like Colorado to spend more. This “arms race” will never end until only the big boys are playing and the little teams all become the Montreal Expos. What good is that for the sport. I hate baseball. I absolutely hate it. Plus, anyone who gets stupid over needing ten million a year vs. nine million is just a plain fool. Everyone knows it. I think a cap is needed to stop the arms race. It should be instituted over a number of years to allow the bigger teams to gradually reduce their payroll. This is the only way the NHL will survive, and the players darn well know it.

  2. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    The more I think about it, the more I think the owners are going to try to break the union. Unlike an autoworker or airline strike, these workers are paid like CEOs and think it is OK for the owners to take it on the chin when TV ratings are down as are league revenues. Simply put, with scoring down along with the popularity of the sport (post 1994 strike, the rise of the trap, lack of players to replace Wayne and Mario) – things need to change. and if you are going to change them why not mimic a sport that makes money like the big three in the US?

    I thin the owners are holding Gary Bettman’s ass to the fire and rightfully so. He has been incredibly bad as a commissioner. The strike in 1994, the loss of scoring, not developing new star and worse – opening up franchises too quickly in cities where there is no base of hockey fans (Columbus, Phoenix, San Jose, Anaheim etc…) NOW the owners want him to finally do something good for the game in getting a “cost certainty” OR as some suggest, he might be out.

    As bad as Bettman is – Goodenow and the NHLPA are worse. I agree wit the idea of breaking the union. Play AHL and Junior players. Pick new players from college and start over before some union boss tells the owners how their millionaire players are underpaid as teams struggle to stay a float. The minute the league seems serious about using “scabs” REAL hockey players will say “Man, I make a ton of money in the NHL and MoDo can’t sign EVERY NHL player for $3,000,000.” Neither can the WHA with its 6 teams and a 15,000,000 cap.

    The fact is the NHL is the marketplace and the NHLPA better figure it out fast because if there is even one day of a lockout, the game will be damaged, possibly forever. For each day the players are locked out and there is no hockey, there will be that many more kids watching X Games and playing PSII instead of going to NHL games or watching them on TV.

    The saddest part is – the two sides don’t treat each other like partners. They abuse each other to the detriment of the game and the business of the game. Not only are the economics of the game broken but the game itself is broken. There needs to be a bigger rink, more scoring, a safer environment to play in etc… All the NHLPA and Bettman can talk about is money. Don’t they see that if there were a few 50 goal scorers and more come from behind wins that there would be more interest from the ALL IMPORTANT US TV market? and wit those ratings, there would be lucrative TV deals that would allow the league to up the salary cap to pay the players more? C’mon guys – both sides – WAKE THE HELL UP before you damage the game and the business of the game forever.

  3. StuWild says:

    NHLPA is a fu***ng joke. That’s all I have to say. I would love to get my hands on Bob Goodenow that arrogant puke!

  4. TheCoach says:

    The NHLPA is a joke. All I’ve heard from the players is that they want to play. All I’ve heard from Bob Goodenow is that they will sit. Now, shouldn’t the players influence what the union does? I guarantee you that is all the players took a silent vote, they would agree to a salary cap. I’m sure players like Yashin and Yagr would oppose it, but the majority of the members are near the leaue average. They would not take a significant hit in pay. They would still make their 1 or 2 million, it’s the 7 million dollar players who would go down to 5.

    Frankly, I think these 2 giant egos that Bettman and Goodenow possess will be the cause of a lockout. Both of them have to realize that they need to make compromises. The Team 1200 here in Ottawa had Geoff Courtnall on, and he said that he does not think that those 2 men are the ones who can fix the game. And that is true. How can we expect the 2 people who created this problem to all of a sudden fix it.

    Also, on Thursday Steve Thomas said the NHLPA should consider using a system similiar to the NBA. A salary cap with the Larry Bird rule which allows teams to keep their star players. A day after he all of a sudden retracted his statement. You can bet that this was after Bob Goodenow had a little chat with him.

  5. Habfanforever says:

    In all reality, the owners need to take at least half the blame for this mess. If your boss offers you 9 million$ for a year’s work, you’d be an idiot to say no.

    On the other hand, if your boss is running out of money and can only afford to pay you 5 million from now on, you’d be an idiot as well if you spit on that offer and sit out and play in some other makeshift league that’ll only pay you a fraction of that.

    I guess that it’s mostly the 2nd or 3rd liners or role players that are opposing a salary cap the most because their spot on a team’s roster would be all but guaranteed.

    I still think the best format would be to analyze each player’s past statistics and offer them a base salary plus bonuses for performances. You’ll see a lot of players bring out their best because whether or not they get their Ferrari at the end of the year will depend on their on-ice performance. The competition will be better and the sport’s popularity would rise. The bonuses could also be limited depending on the player and their stats.

  6. cgolding says:

    The players have zero leverage at this point. Almost all of the owners in hockey were either losing money, or just breaking even while the league was playing… add to that the fact that in the modern NHL the owners ALL have outside revenue streams that can more than support them operating their franchise bare-boned(notice all the lay-offs that are happening until the CBA is resolved). Simply put the owners have all the cards and the players only argument is, “we want to play and you aren’t letting us…”

    It’s a fact that some players get it, you have these Thomas quotes and at the All-Star game a couple of years ago both Hull and Roenick(two very outspoken players obviously) stated that the financials were completely out of whack. 75% of the league was overpaid according to Hull… Clearly some of the players understand the situation, but they are also part of the union and holding to the union.

    Unless the players make a decision to cut a deal behind closed doors we are looking at a lock-out. However, I think there is some grumbling back there that common sense might prevail. I mean anyone with minimal math skills can realize that the NHL’s TV deal is a joke compared to the other major sports, so obviously they shouldn’t be making as much money as those sports.

    We shall see.

  7. StuWild says:

    A Salary cap is needed and I hope the players do get locked out and hope the league does not budge at all. I guarantee the players would not want to sit out a full season and if they did, i’m sure they wouldn’t sit out two seasons. Of course I want a season as much as any fan but things need to be fixed. I’ll take you back to 88′ when Gretz was getting traded to LA. Bruce McNall when working out a contract with him said I have to make sure you are the highest paid player in the game. Wayne’s response was that he would rather sign for less so the team had more money to surround him with other players to help them win. Are there no players out there anymore that share this common sense and loyal attitude? Is there even a difference between 5 million and 7 million dollars? What does every player say when they are getting interviewed after winning the Stanley Cup? it’s been a dream ever since I was a little boy to win Lord Stanley. If that is truly every player’s goal, wouldn’t more of them share Wayne’s attitude on this issue?

  8. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    Like him or not, Hull took less moeny to play in Phoenix.

    Its about the game not the money. He and JR get that.

  9. cgolding says:

    i’m sure others get it as well… those two just talk more and don’t really care about the heat they might draw.

  10. Aetherial says:

    It has been my guess all along that the owners are trying to break the union.

    I honestly hope they do.

    I don’t care who is right or wrong or lieing about the economics.

    What I see is a bunch of cry baby athletes making exhorbitant money for doing something they supposedly love to do…

    I would like nothing more than to see a lockout of 2 or 3 years until there IS NO MORE NHLPA.

    Sadly, I think the owners will cave because, despite not liking the players union… I think the owners are lieing, they ARE making money (or don’t care).

    Ultimately the players *should* cave… THEY Are the ones with very limited careers… a couple years would hurt.

    I soooooo much hope it is 2 or 3 years.

  11. Habfan1234 says:

    It is only a small cabal of owners that are ruining the game (e.g., Dallas, Colorado, Detroit, New York, Philidelphia, and Toronto). The rest of the owners are trying to have some fiscal restraint in order to have a sounder buisness model but, unfourtunatley, the aforemntioned teams screw their plans up and they are then forced into paying the going “market” price for a sack of s*** akin to a Bobby Holik or Martin Lapointe.

  12. cgolding says:

    I would be shocked if the owners were making money. The teams in the other leagues make a ton of money because their TV contracts are very lucrative… the other stuff doesn’t help nearly as much. Then when you look at simple salary comparisons between the leagues the money that the NHL players are making is absolutely astonishing… so the only teams i could see making money off of their ownership are the really strong markets, which is mediated by how much they spend on their teams… and the guys completely low-balling on their team salary.

    i pray it isn’t that long… i can’t go that long without NHL.

  13. AmazingHockeyPckWackerGuy says:

    Wow this is weird.. i read same the exact article today at TSN.ca

  14. Freeze says:

    Steve Thomas is dissenting because he has maybe one year left to play in the NHL and there’s a chance his career is over. Having said that, I agree with Thomas.

    This CBA negotiation is all about protecting the small market owners from the big market owners. The owners created this mess and the NHL absolutely needs to have some form of salary cap or luxury tax at a minimum.

    The TV revenues simply aren’t there to support paying players $8-10 million a year and the playing field needs to be leveled out across the league. What does seem funny to me is teams like the Rangers and Leafs have huge payrolls, but these team either flop in the playoffs or don’t even qualify for post-season play. Spending a ton of money doesn’t guarantee success.

    Anyway, how many millions does a player need to have a great life?

    MLB, the NBA and the NFL all have either a salary cap or a luxury tax and these sports have HUGE TV contract revenues compared to the NHL.

    The owners can’t show restraint and govern themselves, so the CBA will have to do it for them. This one seems like a no-brainer to me.

  15. Lint07 says:

    Talk about a coincidence, the writer even wrote the TSN link at the bottom!

  16. rojoke says:

    “Players are taking less in certain markets to play and to me, that shows you that things are becoming more responsible.”

    Let’s just run with that proposition. Let’s accept that the owners/GMs have finally looked up the meaning of “restriant” and have decided to stop giving out those 5-year, $50 million deals. Let’s even suggest that they do it for, oh, three or four years into the future. What’s going to happen? Nothing. Why? Simple. Arbitration, in its present form. Take a look at two recent rulings. Joe Thornton, $6.75 million. Scott Niedermayer, $7 million. Until all the big money contracts are expired and they sign those smaller deals, arbitration will continue to give out those huge deals. The only way to combat this is for to teams to walk away from the big awards.

    But that leaves them out there as free agents, for anybody to sweep up. No problem, the GMs aren’t giving out those huge deals anymore, remember? So, now we have big ticket free agents, players in their prime, who are getting “low-ball” offers all of a sudden instead of the really big money. After a couple of years of this, what happens next? Come on, say it with me – COLLUSION!!!

    The union will “imply” that the owners are now working together and withholding offers from free agents, and in effect, limiting their earning power. They’ll threaten to sue in the US under anti-trust laws, hoping that the owners will cave in and open up the vaults again. After all, if a players goes from $6 million or $7 million a season to $3 million or $4 million overnight, then there has to be some kind of conspiracy going on, right?

  17. big_booty says:

    This reminds me of a story that came out in 1994 during the MLB strike.

    During a players-only gathering in Florida, Lenny Dykstra, Philadelphia outfielder and popular amongst fans, players, and executives alike, stood before his peers and suggested that maybe they were being to greedy, that maybe they should put aside their egos and get back to playing the game for the good of everyone involved.

    He was promptly booed off the stage.

    I was encouraged to hear of Thomas’ original statement, as I’m sure many of you were. It actually gave me pause, and led me to believe that maybe – just maybe – we might see NHL action come October.

    Now this. How sickening.

    Also sickening was an ESPN article that centered on player agent Mike Gillis, whose mantra is: “Maximizing compensation is the first and foremost part of my job.”

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=1840485

    Read this article and you will come to see, as I did, how one former player’s beef with his former agent/union executive turned into a cold disregard for the game itself, sowing the seeds of greed.

    As long as there are people like Mike Gillis involved in this sport, this problem will not go away.

    Additionally, I agree with the “break the union” sentiment. It’s been my belief that Gary Bettman is aping his mentor, NBA commissioner David Stern, by trying to get this done. It was player agents who tried to lead the revolt against the NBA, and Stern who quashed it.

    If I were Bettman, I’d bring my pal Stern to the next bargaining session.

  18. big_booty says:

    I forgot all about Joe Nieuwendyk’s comments.

    If, in Joe’s words, the current system is “starting to work,” why has it taken a full decade for it to do so?

    Will it take ten more years for another new system to “start to work” as well?

    Enjoy your Kool-Aid, Joe.

  19. Aetherial says:

    Whoever said collusion hit the nail right on the head.

    I haev been saying this for more than a year. The big problem I have with the player’s position (outside of sheer greed) is that they won’t accept a free market economy, period!

    As soon as salaries start to *lower* they WILL, IMMEDIATELY cry collusion!

    The only reason they have not done it already this year is because it would be impossible to prove given the labor climate.

  20. albabynyr says:

    This is my solution to the impending labor impasse in the NHL. Please feel free to let me know your honest opinion.

    One: Soft Salary Cap of $40 million

    Two: Luxury tax of 15% over cap number

    Three: Maximum salary and maximum # of years on any contract

    Four: Minimum team salary of $33 million

    Penalties

    Go over cap by $5 miilion or less — lose 3rd round pick in the next draft

    Go over cap by $5 – $10 million — lose 2nd round pick in the next draft

    Go over cap by $10 – $20 million — lose 1st round pick next draft

    Go over cap by $20 – $25 million — lose 1st and 2nd round picks next draft

    Go over cap by $25 million or more lose 1st round pick for the next 2 drafts

    If you don’t spend at least $33 million you lose your next 1st round pick

    All picks go into a pool in which there is an equally weighted lottery for all teams

    that are not over or under the salary requirements. Once you get a pick- you are no

    longer elegible for any more picks unless every eligible team has already received a

    pick.

  21. faceoff says:

    Thanks for the link to that article. You are right, it is sickening. Holik’s contract made me sick from day one, but to read he was offered 8.75 million a year and then refuse it because he wanted 9 is horrible. Squabbling over $250000 a year when you will be making over 8 million is digusting. The article makes it quite clear he only ended up in NY because he is greedy. He wanted to play for Toronto, but wasn’t willing to “settle” for the small salary of 8 million a year they were offering.

    What a joke.

  22. faceoff says:

    I’m not keen on the minimum salary because now teams under 33 million would have to offer more money to players just to “top up.” What if a team had a payroll of 25 million and had only two unsigned players. That would mean the two players would have to get contracts totalling 8 million between them, regardless of their playing ability. This would continue the trend of overpaying marginal players. Look at the Yankees in baseball.

    Great idea of losing picks for going over a cap. The big spending teams don’t care about a tax if they go over by 10-20 million, so why not hurt them depth wise.

  23. rojoke says:

    The luxury tax is meant to be a deterrant for teams who go over a certain limit. And as any casual observrer can see, in MLB’s system, it’s not doing that at all. I don’t know exactly what their tax level is, but I would guess that it’s around the 15% mark that you have suggested the NHL adopt. So that begs the question, if it isn’t working in baseball, why would it work in hockey. Yes, the tax would kick in at a lower level, but at what point does it actually accomplish what it’s meant to accomplish?

    For example, you set the bar at $40 million and the tax rate at 15%. That would put the Detroit somewhere around $37 million over the cap at the start of the 2003-04 season. They would have to pay the league a little over $5.5 million in luxury tax. Now for a big market team like Detroit, that may not necessarily be a major hinderance to their operations. With their fan base, they may even be able to cover that without incurring an actual loss, fiscally speaking.

    So in order to make it more effective, at least compared to baseball’s tax system, the rate has to be high. Exhorbitantly high. Punitively high. I’m taking 40%-50% range. Keeping it that high will make even the larger market teams think twice about how much they’re willing to spend. Using Detroit again, their tax bill would go from $5 million to $18 million. There’s no way even Mike Ilitch would spend that kind of money without second guessing the Red Wings’ front office. And that would be very hard to try and recoup during the season, even if a team went to the Finals.

    And I don’t think there really needs to be a minimum salary level, and even if it were adopted, losing a first rounder is a little heavy handed. A team could post a winning record, or at least break even, with a $30 million payroll. Maybe there could be some sort of qualifier with it, such as if you go below a minimum, but make the playoffs, or achieve a certain level of success point-wise (straight points or improvement over the previous season), then you wouldn’t be penalized for it. After all, the Nashville Predators made the playoffs for the first time, and they began the season with a payroll of only $23 million. I’m not sure where it was in April, but I seriously doubt if it ever got even close to $30 million.

  24. SUMMITS says:

    I think Stevie is just pretending to like the salary cap to suck up to the NHL Brass, and mabe just maybe he’ll get a contract next year.

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  25. Freeze says:

    Isn’t it odd how the players never cry “collusion” when the owners are, in unison, trying to outbid each other for a player’s sevices. That’s OK. When the owners are trying to practice fiscal responsibility to preserve the life of a magical game, that’s called “collusion.”

  26. Freeze says:

    When a player’s need for greed threatens the future of a magical game like hockey, push has come to shove. Maybe the players need to reflect on their youth hockey days to regain an understanding of why they pursued this wonderous game to begin with.

  27. Radio says:

    Let’s posit an example of what may eventually happen under the free market NHL system:

    Player A wants 15 million a season.

    Team A cannnot pay that money, lest they go way under profit and the team goes bankrupt.

    Player A attempts to get offers from other clubs @15 million.

    No other team is willing to go near that range.

    Player A can then sit out the season, or he can accept a lower pay. It works itself out on its own.

    The teams can’t pay with money they don’t have.

    But let’s say Team A signs Player A anyway. In order to make up for his (and other players) large contract raises — they raise season ticket prices to an average of $95 a ticket.

    At this rate how many people will pay to see the team? If people can afford/value the hockey enough to see the team at this rate, then there is no problem. If they can’t, then huge economic losses ensue.

    If this happens, the team needs new ownership with bigger pocketbooks — or they have to shut down.

    Wost case scenario then:

    Team A shuts down.

    Team B shuts down.

    Team C Relocated then shuts down…

    etc…

    But the demand to see good hockey is still there. the League (or a new/existing league) moves to the forefront via investment, and we are back in business. This time (hopefully) the owners have learned from the mistakes of the past and don’t dig their own graves so quickly.

    Finally, owners should come to understand that a sports franchise is not really business and exists for his/her entertainment. Don’t expect to make money owner — expect to pay to see them play — and invite others to minimize the costs. You do have another job to pay for the team don’t you, owner?

  28. Radio says:

    “They must only be allowed to spew out the rhetoric promulgated by the Union, which is the messianic quality of the free and unfettered marketplace. “

    lol…what economics teacher fed you this mass of contradictions?

    There was a time when unions freely gathered to ensure businesses did not take advantage of them — but they have since changed into organisation to get rid of a free and unfettered marketplace via petitioning for government regulations for saftey, health and wages. In any union other than a sports union this is blatantly obvious. But because this players union supports a laissez-faire approach to contracts you dislike them.

    You know what happens “automatons without an intellect and reasoning capacity of their own” in a free market?

    They die. And deservedly so.

    There is no “cost certainty” in sports. There is only a buffet that owners need to admit they must pay for — or decide to stop paying for it.

  29. rojoke says:

    Allow me to interject a thought, if I may. And for the purposes of this argument, don’t even consider the dollar amounts.

    Player A wants 15 million a season.

    Team A cannnot pay that money, lest they go way under profit and the team goes bankrupt.

    Player A attempts to get offers from other clubs @15 million.

    No other team is willing to go near that range.

    Player A can then sit out the season, or he can accept a lower pay. It works itself out on its own.

    The teams can’t pay with money they don’t have.

    Player Agent A for Player A lowers his asking amount, and tries to solicit contracts from teams. Again, no offers are forthcoming. Not willing to believe that he, or his client, could possibly over-estimate their value on the open market, they bring their concerns to the NHLPA. Not willing to believe that (a) any team could not want to have Player A at any price or; (b) owners and GMs could possibly have a shred of self-control or fiscal responsibility, they immediately begin to hint to certain media representatives that the owners are deliberately trying to limit the earning potential of certain NHL players, and in concert with each other, are trying to intimidate the players as individuals and the union as a group. In response to such tactics, the union is entertaining legal actions in an effort to remedy the situation for the benefit of the players as a group and the game of hockey as an institution. This is done, of course, in the hopes that the threat of a lengthy anti-trust case – we’re talking several years here – will scare the owners into opening up the vaults again like the “good old days.”

    If this scenario were to come to pass, I just hope that Bob Goodenow, who I assume is a lawyer, will remember the first rule of examination of a witness: Never ask a question you don’t already know the answer to. If he wants to accuse the owners of collusion, then he better damn well know, with 1000% certainty, that they are in collusion, and they can prove it. Because if he’s either wrong or unable to do it in court, then the union, for all intents and purposes, will have been broken – from the inside, no less!

  30. Habfan1234 says:

    I agree that my statement is, somewhat, a mass of contradictions. The statement refers to the NHLPA and not to industrial and service unions. If I did not capitalize the word union then you would have been right in taking me to task about the statement but I did. The only reason why I stated that was because the marketplace has been very favourable to the NHLPA over the last 10 years and they will, inevitable, try to limit any rollbacks or caps on their earnings that they received from the marketplace.

    In the real world unions try to limit and regulate the marketplace because, as we have seen over the past 25 years and in America’s Gilded Age, the unfettered marketplace will lean towards the maximization of profits with low overhead accompanied with the dereliction of worker’s rights.

    I likened the Union to the Bolshevik party where everyone must follow and reiterate the leader’s policies and desires. So the players are being moulded to become automatons like what was attempted after, and during, the Russian Civil War. These automatons would die out in the free market because of their lack of intellect but that is being covered by the aplomb of Bob Goodenow and sports-agents.

    I agree that there is no cost certainty in sports. But, what I was getting at was the fact that the owners need some sort of “cost certainty” in order for their gluttonous desires at the buffet to be quelled by a xenical-like CBA. Or, in other words, they need “cost certainty to save them from themselves from over-eating at the buffet.

  31. 19Yzerman says:

    Tell that to Ted Lindsey. Perhaps you need to see the movie”Net Worth” which depicts the formation of the NHLPA. Yea maybe the SOME players have been getting a LITTLE over paid.The NHPLA is a much needed entity.Once opon a time Gordie Howe was given a Red Wings jacket as a signing bonus.As far as the Owners vs NHLPA?? WEll when I go to a game I am there to see players perform not to worship a LOGO. All this take about %’s of revenues and not a word of seat price reductions.

  32. 19Yzerman says:

    1998 Sergei Fedorov earned 10 million bonus simply because the Red Wings(Defending Cup Champs) made it to the conference finals. A condition set forth by the Carolina Hurricanes in a contract that the wings matched.So you see they are doing it to each other. I know the Red Wings owner isn’t ruining the game because he was recently induct to the Hocket Hall of Fame.

  33. 19Yzerman says:

    If the owners are losing as much as they claim then they will be able to lockout for a longer term since they weren’t going to make much anyhow. If the owners cave then perhaps there was more earnings then they were claiming. Long live the NHLPA. I go to NHL games to see players perform not worship a LOGO.

  34. 19Yzerman says:

    Charge $20 per seat no matter where in the areana and sevre beers for $1. make the fans happy. who cares about anything else.

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