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ogreslayer

2012 Lockout Watch

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I have a bad feeling about this. Especially after the Bettman/Stern/Costas ménage à trois. The NHL had to file the notice to legally begin negotiations or the CBA would have automatically renewed for another year. It was clear the league wanted to make changes, so this being filed is a mere formality. Unfortunately, the lockout may be another formality as well.

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what else does the league want? The got their "parity" throughout the league, revenue is up, they got the Cap in place, they got their "KID" the Cup (maybe one wasn't enough and they need changes to make sure he gets every two out of three?) I don't know what else the league would want from the players. If the NHL suffer another lockout or lose of an entire season, it is over. It cannot survive another whole, half or any part of the season being cancelled... I cannot see why Bettman still has his job, half a season lost in 1994-95, entire 2005 season lost AND now this possibility!?!? Why does this fool still have a job? He has done hardly anything GOOD for the NHL and tons bad!

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The biggest sticking point in the last CBA negotiation was the hard Salary Cap. Since that was the biggest thing the players were against, and the owners got the hard cap anyway, there's always the chance that this CBA negotiation will go smoothly. I could see the main sticking point this go-round being the players share of the revenue, though.

The article brings up a good point, though. Last time around, there was heated rhetoric and blame gaming from both sides for months leading up to the cancellation of the existing CBA. Whereas there hasn't been anything that I've seen this time. Hopefully that means that both sides realize another lockout would be catastrophic to the league and the players alike.

Get this thing done in a timely manner, please. The last thing we need is another round of millionaires vs. billionaires fighting a very public war over money.

roboturner, Frozen-Man and LidsFan like this

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They will probably want to fix the loopholes in the contracts that the last CBA created. (i.e. long front loaded contracts). They are also likely to push to decrease the players revenues as I believe the players are getting 57%. The NBA negotiations set a bad precedent since they were able to get the players to reduce their share to 50%. It is likely the NHL does the same. Costas asked Bettman this directly, Bettman declined comment, but Stern leaned in and said 'Yes'. Bettman looked at him like, 'you f***', but Donald and Lil Gary are friends, so I wouldn't bet against the league trying to do so. They also want realignment, which was rejected by the NHLPA already. I'm sure there is a slew of stuff we don't know about or that has not been brought to light yet.

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From what I've seen, the big sticking point will be revenue sharing. Currently, the players get 57% and the owners want it split 50/50 like the NBA just locked in.

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what else does the league want? The got their "parity" throughout the league, revenue is up, they got the Cap in place, they got their "KID" the Cup (maybe one wasn't enough and they need changes to make sure he gets every two out of three?) I don't know what else the league would want from the players. If the NHL suffer another lockout or lose of an entire season, it is over. It cannot survive another whole, half or any part of the season being cancelled... I cannot see why Bettman still has his job, half a season lost in 1994-95, entire 2005 season lost AND now this possibility!?!? Why does this fool still have a job? He has done hardly anything GOOD for the NHL and tons bad!

He still has a job because he was pretty much brought in to implement a cap. He lost us a season and a half of hockey, but he got the owners what they wanted.

If there's another lockout, that pretty much solidifies it for me that Bettman needs to go and has done more damage than good to the NHL.

The biggest sticking point in the last CBA negotiation was the hard Salary Cap. Since that was the biggest thing the players were against, and the owners got the hard cap anyway, there's always the chance that this CBA negotiation will go smoothly. I could see the main sticking point this go-round being the players share of the revenue, though.

The article brings up a good point, though. Last time around, there was heated rhetoric and blame gaming from both sides for months leading up to the cancellation of the existing CBA. Whereas there hasn't been anything that I've seen this time. Hopefully that means that both sides realize another lockout would be catastrophic to the league and the players alike.

Get this thing done in a timely manner, please. The last thing we need is another round of millionaires vs. billionaires fighting a very public war over money.

In theory now that they have the cap, it shouldn't be nearly as contentious. But Bettman has the diplomacy skills of a sledgehammer. He's already used the realignment proposal to make the NHLPA look bad and set a very divisive tone, so it's hard for me to be hopeful.

My prediction is that now that they have the cap, they're going to try and notch down the percentages to make it even more profitable for the owners.

To me it was still a massive concession for the players to have their salaries tied to league revenues. They have zero control over increasing revenue for the NHL. They don't market the game. They don't choose the cities that get franchises. They're the talent.

My understanding is that on top of that they have a portion of their paycheck's put in a slush fund all year, then it's given back to them at the end if the league meets it's projections. Otherwise it goes to the league.

The owners have a pretty sweet deal with the cap, and we've still seen that some of them can't help themselves from giving awful contracts to players. In terms of profitability of the league and franchises, player salaries aren't the biggest factor anymore.

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So what are the possible outcomes if there is a lockout?

And may I add, I don't want a lockout....

Edited by Rivalred

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I think the league (if not the owners) want to put an end to the decade long, front loaded contracts, which I think is fair enough. Maybe a 7 year limit on contract length?

The owners also want to make it easier (and cheaper) to buy a player out - I'm not so keen on that, I think if a GM makes a bad contract he has to learn to pay the consequences. I don't want to see a situataion like the NFL were players are signed and then cut on a whim with little to no damage to the team, and nothing for the player.

Obviously revenue split is going to be the big sticking point. Greedy owners always want more, rich players don't want to give any up. Bettman was very clever at the last lockout when put the minimum salary up from $350,000 to $500,000. Approx 40% of the NHLPA are on minimum salary contracts, so thats a large group of players who had a vested intrest in that going through. Don't be surprised to see another increase in minimum salary.

edit: And if there is another lockout, then one condition of any agreement is that Bettman MUST go. 3 lockouts on one mans watch is more than enough.

Edited by Nev

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Don't be surprised to see another increase in minimum salary

I wonder if the NHLPA pushes for raising the salary floor for teams too.

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I think the league (if not the owners) want to put an end to the decade long, front loaded contracts, which I think is fair enough. Maybe a 7 year limit on contract length?

Agreed. I think contract length limits will be added in the new CBA. I like the idea of balancing the cap hit by using the average salary, but I think the Kovalchuk situation signaled the beginning of the end of that practice.

The owners also want to make it easier (and cheaper) to buy a player out – I'm not so keen on that, I think if a GM makes a bad contract he has to learn to pay the consequences. I don't want to see a situataion like the NFL were players are signed and then cut on a whim with little to no damage to the team, and nothing for the player.

Also agreed. There has to be some kind of consequence to a GM’s actions.

I imagine the GM's will push the owners pretty hard for some kind of “Amnesty” buyout. Probably a one time buyout period like they did with the last CBA, and like the NBA did recently. Give GM’s a chance to buyout one player (maybe more) at no penalty, up to a certain date prior to next season. But after that, they’re saddled with any contract they sign, with stiff penalties for future buyouts. I’d imagine they might try and work out an option for teams currently paying those penalties to be free of one of those buyouts (i.e. Nashville could be free of their buyout to J.P. Dumont, or TB and Vinny Prospal

edit: And if there is another lockout, then one condition of any agreement is that Bettman MUST go. 3 lockouts on one mans watch is more than enough.

You’re 3-for-3.

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I wonder if the NHLPA pushes for raising the salary floor for teams too.

That, and they'll probly want the age cutoff where a player hits UFA to be reduced by a year as well. ISTR that was in the last CBA (currently 27? 28?)

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That, and they'll probly want the age cutoff where a player hits UFA to be reduced by a year as well. ISTR that was in the last CBA (currently 27? 28?)

Currently it is 27. Hence why Weber will still be a RFA.

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This past January, I was going to start a thread when I read this article from the Canadian Press, posted here on Sportsnet. In particular, the following from Uncle Gary:

"Don Fehr obviously being somewhat new to the job is going through a bit of a learning curve and wants to make sure he understands what his constituents want. And so, we're patient. I'm not concerned about the time frame."

Any time someone uses the term "learning curve" in describing your level of knowledge, they're not giving you a compliment. In this case, it is "Bettmanspeak", in it's usual condescending fashion, reminding the world that their main foe knows squat about what they've signed up for. I can't find who said it, but a quote about Fehr went something like: "He doesn't know hockey; what he knows about is contract negotiations.

Also, the membership must be pro-active with regards to being a part of the negotiations. This is how the league ran roughshod in the last "negotiations".

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This league can't suffer another lockout. I don't even want to think about it as a possibility right now, the idea scares me.

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what else does the league want? The got their "parity" throughout the league, revenue is up, they got the Cap in place, they got their "KID" the Cup (maybe one wasn't enough and they need changes to make sure he gets every two out of three?) I don't know what else the league would want from the players.

realignment I guess and Gary is playing hard* to get his GM buddies what they want.

other than that issue I expect this CBA to be easier to negotiate.

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Last time the owners played hardball so I hope this time the PA will do the same. The league got everything they wanted now its the players turn I think they will push for a higher salary floor and removing NTC/NMC age.

Another lockout although stupid as hell could also mean the end of the Bettman " Original 12" era which I appreciate.

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The league is as healthy as it has ever been. Revenue is up. Ratings are up. What they can possibly find to squabble over is beyond me.

No one is willing to risk another lockout. This time it would absolutely KILL the league. Negotiations will go relatively smoothly, no lockout.

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The league is as healthy as it has ever been. Revenue is up. Ratings are up. What they can possibly find to squabble over is beyond me.

No one is willing to risk another lockout. This time it would absolutely KILL the league. Negotiations will go relatively smoothly, no lockout.

Never underestimate the greed from some of the billionaires it is very sad. Another lockout would be a killer but I am prepared for every outcome. Will watch AHL, SEL, SWISS league and KHL if it really comes to another one.

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Any time someone uses the term "learning curve" in describing your level of knowledge, they're not giving you a compliment...

This guy Donald Fehr knows exactly what he wants though, he's well past that learning curve:

- money: "A salary of $3 million per year to run through completion of collective bargaining after the current CBA expires following the 2011-12 season."

- money: "A salary of $1.5 million for the remainder of this year."

- money for his little brother: "Approval to hire his brother, Steve, who is currently special counsel to the MLBPA (after 23 years as outside counsel), to an executive position."

- end even more money in the future: "Permission to co-author a book about baseball with Steve.", "Permission to open a consulting firm, though with the express stipulation that his first priority at all times will be the NHLPA."

i have to admit among his demands were a few hockey/players related.

that's all so typical for union leaders.

source: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/jim_kelley/09/09/Don.Fehr/index.html

Never underestimate the greed from some of the billionaires union leaders it is very sad. Another lockout would be a killer but I am prepared for every outcome. Will watch AHL, SEL, SWISS league and KHL if it really comes to another one.

fixed it for you.

Edited by ami
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Yes there is risk here, but if some forward thinking types get involved, there could be some huge upsides. For example, how about a super league? the original 6 in NA and 6 in Europe all in the same league? think about it, how big would that be. The first truely international professional league.

yes the long contracts will come to an end. There are several and all are bad. Go look at franzen or Dipatro (spelling). IIRC Franzen-33 has 8 years left on his contract. bad bad deal.

last thought. bettmen was hired by the owners. they like him. he isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

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rene_fasel_1.3584909.1257945102.jpg

"This is our territory and I will fight like hell to not allow anybody to come from abroad. I think in Europe we are strong enough to do something on our own. Try to come. Good luck."

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