Fans Side with NHL regarding CBA

According to TSN, of the 928 Canadian hockey fans surveyed, 83% said they would stand by the NHL even if a lockout wiped out more than half a season as long as it results in a reduction of player salaries and a better deal for smaller clubs.

56% of those think that the NHLPA are the ones that need to compromise.
I’ll be honest I wasn’t surveyed but I’m among the 83% and the 56% as well. I know it’s been argued and beaten to death that both sides are to blame for the current ‘problems’. I do think, however, that the league is now saying, we know there’s a problem and we need to fix it. I don’t think the NHLPA wants to admit to their share of the problem.

I find it disturbing that the NHLPA quickly dismisses proposals from the league because “each one begins and ends with a salary cap”. Well what they propose with a luxury tax does too in a sense. The tax would be applied over X amount of dollars. How is that not a cap?? You need a baseline (a cap) for the tax to be instituted. Yet they are unwilling to hear anything from the league.

The fact that players are jumping the pond next year if there is a lock out also indicates that the players are potentially willing to play for less money in order to keep playing. I’ve not heard any terms of any of the deals nor done any coversions to see if this is in fact the case, but the fact that a lot of the guys are doing this (albeit with escape clauses) might indicate that there isn’t necessarily solidarity among the players themselves.

Even though both sides are playing each other in the media, I think that the league does appear more concerned about what we the fans think than the players themselves do, even though we are the ones who are ultimately paying their salaries through ticket sales, souvenirs, concessions, etc.

7 Responses to Fans Side with NHL regarding CBA

  1. nocuphere says:

    Well the owners caved in the last CBA, it’s time for the players to give a little back.

  2. LeafBasher_BEATER says:

    You can blame the NHLPA or the owners but I have a feeling that Gary Bettman is somehow responsible for this.

  3. 7thWoman says:

    NO! It’s Goodenow who is the stumbling block! He is unmoving and pig-headed. The union no longer cares about the players well-fare. They are concerned with “The Union” as a whole. This is a classic example of biting ones nose to spite ones face. He needs to be replaced by someone who does have the players’ long term best interest at heart.

  4. werdo says:

    Fans should be siding with The Fans in this debacle. The players and many of the owners are making bucket loads of $$, so I have no sympathy for either side. Actually, the owners ineptitude got themselves in this situation, so I have less sympathy for them. The fans are what makes this league possible, so the negotiations should turn more toward what can be done to make the fans happy. Then, funny thing, the fans are happy, the game grows, gets more fans, and finally gets that dream TV contract. Then everybody’s rich. This bickering is extremely selfish and short-sighted.

    The owners have to tell the truth about their books (I still don’t believe them either) and the players have to admit that some teams are in trouble. There is nowhere else to move teams to right now, so that’s not an option, Trevor Linden. And a two tiered league is not entertaining – fans get bored of winning all the time, just as they get tired of losing all the time.

    The proof of the financial trouble in the league is the farm system we’re seeing start to develop. Where Edmonton, for example, develops their young players and then can’t afford them when they reach their prime. A system needs to be implemented whereby teams are able to develop their stars. It’s extremely important to keep them to be able to market the team. Sure, a team can make it to the playoffs with a low payroll and a good system, but that doesn’t generate interest in hockey. I think attendance has also hit the ceiling. Few teams sell out the majority of their games and many are playing to half empty buildings. The price of admission is too high for the quality of the game we’re seeing right now. If ticket prices have to increase any more to accommodate player salaries, some teams may just fold.

    To sum up…It is important to the fans to:

    • Have their team have the possibility to be competitive every year

    • Have familiar players, some stability in the line-up

    • Not have, as an inevitable conclusion, players moving on to more lucrative markets once they have reached their star potential

    • Have reasonably priced tickets

    Make the fans happy and the game will grow. That is not going to happen in the current situation and the bickering about who gets a bigger chunk of MY MONEY is just going to make it worse.

    Bettman and Goodenow need to respect the fans and get something done that makes sense.

  5. qsilver31 says:

    I’m so tired of the NHLPA… you are getting millions to do what most would consider a dream job. Sure the media can be an ass and the we all know hockey isn’t a sport for the weak minded, but come on! There are millions out there who are willing to work hard to get a chance to play hockey at a professional level.

    The only that really bothers me is that the Owners and the Players don’t really give f*** about the fans. They don’t care that we don’t get hockey… that we don’t get to see our fave teams and players… they just want to make money. Which is reasonable, but still unacceptable.

    I really wanna see this WHA get launched. I know there are tons of problems right now, but I’m sick and tired of the NHL. Sure they’ve given me tons of memorable moments, but at the same time, they’ve also been bringing in tons of revenue which at this point, they obviously care about more. Its their fault really, for not stepping in and being prepared in the 1995 lockout to take the so called “175 million dollar loss”.

    I just wanna see some decent hockey. Without the clutching and grabbing and consistently battles along the boards. Good end-to-end hockey that we so rarely get. I know I’ve ranted along a lot of crap, but I just wish for this to all be over. NHL or not, I just wanna see some good old-fashion hockey.

  6. 19Yzerman says:

    The 2002-2003 NHL Unified Report of Operations indicates there was 11 profitable teams and 19 non-profitable teams. The URO also indicates that the players collectively was 75% of the over all NHL’s costs for the same season.

    Are these figures accurate? Well considering the URO is an unaudited voluntary system. I get to thinking maybe the URO figures are not 100% accurate. This the basis for the NHL’s imminent lockout. The players aren’t buying it either. Which is why the NHLPA isn’t jumping for some kind of large scale player salary reduction CBA. The NHLPA must be thinking more profits and less costs exist then the URO indicates.

    NHL commissioner Gary Bettman is bargaining for a 930 million dollar league wide players salary limit which he claims will provide “Cost certainty” and will average 31 million per team. This has me wondering how many of the 11 profitable teams were carrying salaries at or below 31 million?

    So I ask why should fans stand by the NHL if the NHLPA doubts the leginamcy of the URO claims to losing money?

    I think the owners might be hiding something and should offer more bonafied evidence to its claim of lose.

    Open the finance books of all NHL teams for the NHLPA to see and offer reduced ticket pricing for the fans.

  7. tmeyers says:

    Im a little torn on this one. I know the players are being greedy. They want more money to feel like the other sports “stars” do. But then again (being from the Hartford area)…I know to never, ever trust what that duech bag Bettman says and does (Karmanos too!). This guy is awful and needs to be fired. How bad does a presidents record have to be? The numbers are at a low across the board! Union negotiations broke off long ago. We have to let the owners know that to truly fix the NHL (without stupid little rule changes that change the sport) is to get rid of this guy. More money can be made and a better product will be made if the players respect the league and have confidence in the management.

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