NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly: Whose bills, this time?
Gary: Still Phoenix. You know that last season we paid for bottled water at their offices? And for Ed Jovanovski?
Bill: Yeah, but he's the City of Glendale's problem now, and only for one more year. He'll never make it to Winnipeg. Of course, neither will the team, am I right?
Gary: One more year! One! [flourishes cape, laughs, thunder rolls, lightning flashes]
Bill: So Gary, about this Ilya Kovalchuk contract, what are we gonna do? The Devils front-loaded that deal like crazy -- of the US$102-million, he'd get US$98.5-million in the first 11 years, and then in the last six years he'd be paid in cotton candy and hockey tape. The average cap hit is $6-million. Cripes, that's what we're paying Ed Jovanovski.
Gary: Have him killed.
Bill: I keep telling you, Gary, we can't have players killed. If we could, Sean Avery would be in a ditch in New Jersey.
Gary: I told you to write that into the last collective bargaining agreement, didn't I? Didn't I?
Bill: Gary, stay focused here. Look, we let the Marian Hossa deal go through, and the Duncan Keith deal go through, and the Henrik Zetterberg deal go through...
Gary: Get to the point. Bill: ... and the Roberto
Luongo deal go through, and the Johan Franzen deal go through...
Gary: [Throws a hockey puck. Daly ducks just in time. The puck lands on the carpet, where it is quickly stolen by Chris Pronger.]
Bill:... and the Chris Pronger deal go through, but boy, this one's really rubbing our faces in that loophole. Sure, we allowed 15 years for Rick DiPietro, and he's made of balsa wood tied together with twine, but 17 years?
Sure, we allowed deals that would see Zetterberg and Franzen play until they're 40, and Pronger play until he's 42, but 44? That's just crazy, right?
Gary: [smirks coldly] Whoever wrote this CBA wasn't paying very close attention, were they, Bill?
Bill: [soldiers on] So I say we reject it as a contravention of the agreement. It's time to draw the line.
Gary: The red line?
Bill: You think you're so funny.
Gary: OK, OK. Well, I'll consider it. Better warn our pal Lou Lamoriello, though. Wouldn't want him to hold an introductory press conference and sell season tickets to see a guy whose contract we rejected.
[The phone rings. Gary, a little surprised, answers]
Lou Lamoriello: Gary, Bill, it's Lou.
Gary: Lou, how did you know we were just talking about you?
Lou: Lou knows everything, sunshine. Lou's sharp.
Gary: Well, Lou, we might reject the Kovalchuk contract.
Lou: Sure you will, sweet cheeks.
Lou: Gary, buddy, do me a favour. Look real close at what I say at the press conference tomorrow. I'm gonna say stuff like, "There is nothing that we have done wrong. This is within the rules. This is in the CBA. There are precedents that have been set. But I would agree we shouldn't have these." And I'm gonna say I absolutely rolled my eyes at the 13-year Ovechkin deal and the DiPietro deal. And I'm gonna say, "as far as what the financial commitment is and that aspect of it, that was out of my hands."
Bill: Lou, why would you do that?
Lou: You let Lou worry about Lou, candy apple. Anyway, I gotta run. I got stuff to do. Just a sec. [shouts] Hey, order up those Kovy ads for the website, willya? You don't, it's your ass!
Gary: But you're still going to go through with the press conference, Lou? We're not kidding, here.
Lou: [cackles, hangs up]
Bill: OK, that takes care of the Devils, I guess. But what about the players' association? They could appeal, right?
[they both laugh]
Gary: No, but seriously, even though the NHLPA is basically run by whoever hasn't gone out for coffee, they'd probably fight it. I mean, the Hossa deal was just about as ridiculous as this.
Bill: Why didn't we reject that deal?
Gary: We were a little busy with Jim Balsillie at the time, if you remember.
Bill: Oh, yeah. You see the local ownership bought Boots del Biaggio's 27% stake in the Predators for US$15.2-million? That means the team is worth what, US$60-million? Jeez, and to think Balsillie offered us four times that.
Gary: [Throws puck. Daly ducks. The puck is alertly scooped up by Chris Pronger, who darts out again.]
Gary: [shouts down hall] What is wrong with you?
[sound of footsteps receding into the distance]
Bill: Hey, when do you think those Ice Edge guys will finally buy the Coyotes, anyway?
[they both laugh.]
Gary: Anyway, the NHLPA is an empty shell. It's nothing.
Bill: Until Don Fehr comes in.
[they both shiver.]
Bill: What are you going to do during the lockout, anyway?
Gary: Bill my friend, the NHL was built on certain unalterable precepts. Sure, we change the rules as soon as Sean Avery does something stupid, and we prop up teams that are failing in ridiculous markets that we're totally devoted to until there's a better one available, and we keep changing the rules. But I'm not so sure about this. I'm worried we'll look like farmers shutting the barn door after the horses have gone.
Bill: Well, I feel strongly about it. Who can get to break the tie?
Gary: How about Colin Campbell? That guy never gets it wrong.
Read more: http://www.nationalp...l#ixzz0ujVAfLNj
Edited by Shaman464, 25 July 2010 - 04:49 PM.