I get that the checks are written regardless, its a figure of speech. If I own a winter season snow removal company up in Prince Albert, Canada and give you your by-weekly pay check for the two weeks you are gone just for you to come back tired, unmotivated and potentially injured and you as a business owner think this is ok then something is wrong with you. I don't care if you make up the time you missed by working more around the two weeks.
What the hell does it being a free country have to do with anything? If I employ you for the whole "season" and pay you a ridiculous amount of money to entertain for my business then I can definitely control what you do. That is what has happened, the owners have got so fed up they got their way.
Get this, If I pay you 5 million dollars to work for 3/4 of a year you are my property.
I am all for the NHL participating in the Winter Olympics. It has been huge for advertising the NHL internationally and has been a blast to watch . I am telling you the main reasons why they have for now pulled out of the Olympics. Its fact
If I'm paying for a season, and getting a season, I really don't care about the exact disbursements. Like I said, there could possibly be an issue with trades (or injuries) and whether or not the percentage of payments made equals the percentage of service received, but that should be a rare case. If it were an issue, just make sure the paychecks are scheduled roughly in accordance to games played, and not have a pay period during the break.
I was kind of being a smartass with the "free country" thing, and didn't mean to spark a political debate. My point was just that it really isn't much of a risk. It's hockey, not a Russian Roulette tournament. The likelihood of injury is small. I don't think it's reasonable for the league to prohibit participation. By all means, make the players bear the liability if they do get injured, but don't say they can't play.
For the "property" thing, there are no words to describe how wrong that is. So I will invent one now... Negoggliotic.
I have a few thoughts. Players exchange certain abilities like choosing where they play and limiting their leisure activities in exchange for obscene amounts of money. All those limits are part of the CBA. They're all agreed to....
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