NHLPA Reportedly Still Stuck on

The NHLPA and NHL met yesterday for the second straight day with the same predictable gloom and doom media spin. Reportedly the offer on the table was a sort of spending minimum and a $42,000,000 hard cap. No tax was being offered to the NHLPA.


The NHLPA’s Ted Saskin is back to talking about “philosophical differences” in the media despite the NHL (AKA the owners of the league who their NHLPA’s players play at the discretion of) telling the union for years that whatever new CBA they agree to will have some level of significant cost certainty. The NHL has not budged from that position and they are not likely to do so because of 300,000,000 reasons they have stored away.

A bloger who claims to be an NHL insider who is covering the topic says the situation isn’t as bad as TSN.ca, Slam.ca, ESPN, Philly.com and The New York Times says. He broke the news of the details of the “offer” being discussed yesterday before any of the other news sources thus giving him some level of credibility.

Matt Barnaby, one of the mid-level players who has benefited greatly from the current CBA agreement, was out with comments today saying how the NHLPA will never accept a cap and that hockey will likely be delayed until this time next year. Mr. Barnaby needs to check with his agent for a bit of reality. Players at his level can easily be replaced by younger, less expensive options from the AHL, Europe and elsewhere. And over the summer WHEN the union is broken – players like Barnaby may find themselves in a very difficult situation trying to make even a fraction of what they once made. The owners are listening and you are embarrassing yourself.

The player’s union act still at this late date like they actually own some steak in the NHL. They are employees (with the exception of Mario) and therefore have no or very little say in the deal that the owners cut with them. They should be concerned about getting the teams healthy right away and then getting some way of increasing the cap in the years thereafter. If refusing to accept a cap thus wrecking the ESPN and NBC TV deals in the US the way to go about that? No – it the exact opposite.

The stakes are too high for this to be over but what I learned from the mindless Bill Guerin interview this week on ESPN Radio was that the players for the most part are not all that smart. With a few exceptions, do not know how to run a business and have no business being the spearhead of a multi-billion dollar negotiation. There was a rumor of having a 3rd party come in and work out the details of a deal. I encourage that because beyond this juncture – the season is going to be dead and the players will NEVER be forgiven by the fans. The players need a wakeup call – you are BLESSED to be able to make the AMAZING money you make now and or would make in a $42,000,000 salary caped NHL. You play a child’s game and get paid like kings. How dare you ruin the league that took over 100 years to build! How dare you disgrace the players that came before you! The players should be ashamed.

9 Responses to NHLPA Reportedly Still Stuck on

  1. adambuffalo says:

    One thing I would like to add about your comment that players “With a few exceptions, do not know how to run a business and have no business being the spearhead of a multi-billion dollar negotiation.”

    On the other hand, most owners didn’t just buy a hockey team and try to run it. Most of them have multimillion or billion dollar companies that they have been running for some time.

    The following is an excerpt from the 2005 Rochester Business Journal….”Thomas Golisano, chairman and CEO of Paychex Inc. and owner of the Buffalo Sabres, again ranks among the richest Americans on Forbes magazine’s 21st annual list.

    Golisano, 61, with assets of $1.6 billion, ranked 126th on this year’s Forbes 400, up from No. 185 a year ago. He ranked No. 125 in 2001.”

    Now he is just one owner, of one the lowest salaried teams I might add, who has made a career of running big businesses. Can’t these people see that these guys aren’t ameteurs. They know how to run large corporations very successfully, our else they wouldn’t have been able to afford NHL teams.

    The one thing I still can’t understand is why these owners let a little weasel like Bettman call the shots for them.

  2. kicksave856 says:

    You mean to tell me that these players (and the suits in the PA) aren’t smart enough to see that they don’t have as much to bargain with as the owners have?

    Isn’t the bottom line here that the owners can just continue the lockout until they reach the dreaded “impasse”, and then shut it down and start it all over again any way that they want to? Then they can have any cap that they want? And any other rules would also be completely up to them?

    And the players can’t see that that’s the end result if they don’t give in? These players can’t see that in their position, you bargain for whatever you can get and take it. I mean, isn’t that pretty much their only option?

    I’m asking here. If I’m wrong about the impasse and all, please let me know.

    Hockey players always seemed like some of the smarter pro athletes. But if I’m getting this right, it just seems like they must all be complete morons.

  3. 19Yzerman says:

    I am outraged that these OWNERS claim to be losing money yet they some how have a cash arsenal of $300,000,000.00 to do battle with.

    Barnabay is a pretty good player. However his team atributes are more then being a goal scorer. He can and will fight, check and is one of the greatest agitators in the league. So you can look at his stats and value him based on those but, you need to keep in mind that when you build a team you need a guy like him on the ice.

    This lockout by these owners may be for the sole purpose to try and break the union. If this happens it will be along time before I buy another ticket to an NHL game if ever.

    Please explain to me how refusing to accept a cap would wreck the ESPN and NBC TV deals in the US. Because the way I see it is the TV net works are doing everthing they can to DEMOTE hockey by claiming that everthing from ESPN dream job to Texas holdem is getting better ratings then the NHL ever did. They are not showing AHL and NCAA hockey instead in attempt to maintain the fans watching hockey as a habit.What they are doing will reduce fan interest to those fans such as you and I. You know us die hards.





    figure skating




    arena football




    hand ball

    squash ball

    or what ever other possible sport in gods creation gets better ratings then the NHL then hockey needs more help than any CAP could offer.

    It is the owners who are holding hockey hostage and the owners are demading a ransom of a CAP CBA being signed in exchange for hockeys safe return. It is the owners who should ashamed for the display of team management incompetence that put them selves into the situation they are in right now in the first place.

  4. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    Rumor is – the big teams are presuring Bettman.

    Supposedly there were meetings via teleconference until 3:45 AM last night and more slated for today.

  5. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    I really thought the agents and “suits” as you call them in the NHLPA knew what they were doing and the ramifications of their actions but listening to Trevor Linden and worse yet – Bill Guerin, I now know they are in WAY over their heads.

    Dennis Potvin suggested the NHLPA put up a cap for a vote of the players. I suggest the NHLPA look into that. I bet a cap gets accepted right away.

  6. Flyers_Fan_In_LA says:

    The NBC TV deal is exactly like the Arena football deal. It is a 2 year term and is based on split revenue. The NHL comes to the table THIS YEAR with some advertisers and sponsors left over from the old ESPN-ABC deal. By next year their agencies will find other venues to advertise in. The goal of Bettman in doing this odd-ball, commission-like TV deal is to show Dick Ebersol at NBC how much money NBC can make with Hockey. By not playing this year and spurning all of the sponsors – that leaves ONE year to show NBC that the NHL is worth investing in.

    what the NHLPA needs is a non-commission deal that pays BIG bucks for a long term. In that case they could try to get a higher cap.

    I know you are pro-union but the point that you guys are all missing is the NHLPA don’t own teams. They don’t own the game. They absolutely can be broken and be replaced. Fans root for the jersey more than the player and if the NHLPA wants to test the NHL’s will they have been warned that they have 300,000,000 reasons why they will win.

    And in the end when the union is broken and the NHL is filled with Jeff carters, Sid crosby’s and al the other kids – union guys who won’t strike agaist the NHLPA and Euro players – what will the NHLPA have accomplished for their rank and file? They will have lost their exisiting contracts, gotten a hard cap system and left some part of the 700 NHL players trying to steal jobs in Europe for an average of $500,000 per year – NOT 1.83 million per year. Bettman has his flaws – trust me he does – but Goodenow has SCREWED his union and worse yet – you and I the fan.

  7. nocuphere says:

    I absolutely believe that. I’m guessing there are at least 6 to 8 ownerships that would bend on the cap.

  8. habsoverserver says:

    I agree.

    I wrote a letter to the NHLPA explaining that players are not the product. Linden is worth $2 mil in a Canucks jersey but if he wants to wear an independent league jersey he is worth $300k per year. The value is in the brand equity.

    Only a few players transcend their sport – Gretz, Jordan, Tiger and Ali were their sports. Everyone else is just a number on a jersey.

  9. cgolding says:

    this whole thing with the union is beginning to remind me of a general who can’t figure out when to quit the field of battle in order to avoid utter disaster, and really it’s all the owners fault… indirectly. just think about it. the players have ALWAYS won these things before. always. thus, they don’t really think they can lose… they think — below the surface of public rhetoric of course — that eventually the owners will crack. eventually the financial strain of not having their building filled will push the owners to accept a deal they don’t want just to get cash flow again.

    it’s at that point that this whole metaphor of the general not being able to leave the field gets really frustrating. they clearly haven’t critically analyzed this situation… they haven’t done game theory on how this plays out. the owners aren’t the dude from “slapshot” anymore, they are corporations and groups that have made massive amounts of money from other sources, and in most cases continue to. they don’t rely on hockey for their income. these teams are hobbies and fun on the side of their corporations and business empires. the players can’t compete monetarily with that… they simply can’t. they are attempting to lay seige to a castle they have no hope in bringing down. it’s purely moronic.

    whether they are blessed or not. whether you think the owners are wrong or not. the players CANNOT win, not that “winning” is really something that anyone is going to take from this.

    the players should have figured this out over the summer… in the fall… a month ago… whenever, and started negotiating hard on the cap itself. they should have started with a luxury tax with some teeth and work at inching the numbers that the owners were offering up slowly and surely. they should have done everything in their power to get the cap as high as possible and signed it as quickly as possible.


    1: get paid to play hockey.

    2: maintain as much of current contracts as possible.

    3: begin working and helping to grow the sport.

    4: any number of other sensical reasons.

    here’s what’s going to happen if they don’t get this done before the season is unsaveable…

    the season will get cancelled officially whenever, but in reality in about a week… if not already. at that point there is no reason for them to negotiate until next august (as stupid as that is). they will make a half-hearted effort to negotiate then, but in reality they won’t get anything done most likely and we will be looking at a half season next year.

    at that point the owners will have lowered their deal. no reason for them not to. the players will have felt an entire year without their big pay checks and gotten a bit of a reality check about what is out there in comparison to the NHL… it isn’t the same. the WHA may get going, but it lacks the arena’s and any sort of TV agreement to compete financially with the NHL… plus it doesn’t have the cup (not to mention the 15 mil salary cap which will make players look like absolute morons for not playing in a league with a 42 million dollar cap).

    so basically by not working hard at getting a season together this year, the PA is going to end up getting a much worse deal most likely AND have given up 1.2 billion dollars in pay in the process.

    how stupid is that?

    the players may talk about how goodenow has done such a good job for them over the years, but he’s royally screwed two groups of players now. the NHLPA should do everything in it’s power to avoid lockouts. consider the avg. length of a players career and the amount of money they can make in that short time… a half season is a huge chunk. if he loses an entire season he’ll have cost certain guys 8/9/10 million dollars.

    great job bob.

    i’m rambling… i’m so frustrated with these morons i need to go throw something. time to go read some more about the paris peace conference (work + post-bac courses absolutely blows for anyone considering it).

    nevermind the bullox,


    ps – i’m a flyers fan… not any player’s fan. they start the season in the fall with a bunch of dude’s that aren’t in the NHLPA i’ll just print out a roster and keep it handy for the first couple of weeks.

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