Donald Fehr expresses optimism as talks resume

There was a bit of good news for hockey fans on Tuesday as NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr expressed optimism that both sides in the labour dispute were ready to start working towards a deal.

Fehr met with reporters in New York about 90 minutes before negotiations resumed at an undisclosed location Tuesday afternoon. They were the first formal talks between the sides since Oct. 18 and Fehr said he hoped it would be the start of a push to end the lockout.

“The players view has always been that we ought to keep negotiating until we find a way to get an agreement,” Fehr told reporters. “You sort of stay at it day by day — so it’s very good to be getting back to the table. We hope that this time it produces more progress that we’ve seen in the past and we can figure out a way to make an agreement and to get the game back on the ice as soon as possible.

“We’re hopeful that we’ll start bargaining and we’ll continue bargaining until we find a way to make a deal,” he added.

You can read more by clicking here.

Meanwhile, former Canadiens coach Jacques Demers – who is now a Senator in Ottawa – said that while the NHL lockout is sad, he doesn’t expect the Harper government to get involved.

“Labour conflicts in companies like Canada Post and Air Canada are one thing, they provide a service to the people,” Demers, the last coach to win a Stanley Cup with the Canadiens, told The Gazette while making a political appearance in St. Lazare on Monday. “I think the government will stay out of this.”

Demers added that it’s frustrating to see how ordinary hard-working people are being affected by the NHL lockout.

You can read more by clicking here.

In Toronto, a woman recently held an auction hoping to sell her Bridle Path area home for $5 million, along with a lot of its contents. The home didn’t sell, but the best deal might have been a framed, autographed Maurice (Rocket) Richard Habs sweater that sold for only $500. Maybe she would have got more in Toronto if it was a Darryl Sittler or Wendel Clark Maple Leafs sweater.

Read more by clicking here.

(Photo by Chris Young/The Canadian Press)



  1. habstrinifan says:

    Actually WJC I have a feeling that you may be right! While they cannot officially sign him I would not be surprised if discussions between Subban(lawyer) and the team have been ongoing secretly and some agreement has been reached. I know if I were the Candiens I would be doing this. In fact in my opinion, if progrss towards a contract HAVE NOT been SUBSTANTIALLY achieved during this ‘free preriod’ then I am really really worried.

    I think Geof Molson will be on the ball on this one because he realizes that with the lockout and fan disillusionment you need ‘exciting’ players like Subban to revive the fans’ interest.

    So on Subban I think you and I kind of agree. On the other stuff… you are way too serious man.

  2. Habitant in Surrey says:


    …tried answering Your link to UN election inspectors Frank, but, for some reason, not working

    …anyhow, yeah, funny and ironic 🙂

  3. habstrinifan says:

    In the interest of calling a spade a spade (be careful now!!!!!) and a genius a genius, I repost a post I made a few days ago. You heard it here first! Now arent you glad you tore yourself away for that lil ol voteing thing and came to read my post!

    Let us not discuss the last line of the post. Pretend it’s been redacted!


    November 4, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    Hockey by a week Monday… take that to the bank!

    The idiots have finally come to their senses and things are getting worked out.

    And at the end of it all… look for Gary Bettman to lose some standing among the owners and be gone within a year. I think Fehr will stay cause the players are gonna be behind the 8 ball for a bit as far as bargaining position and will need him.

    Then we can get down to the real big issue… Do the Habs sign Subbie or not. I say NOT.

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …and, I repeat, You keep forgetin’ to use the ‘ I’m just kiddin’ ‘ icon

      • habstrinifan says:

        I am priming the engine for combustion once the lockout ends. You know that will be the topic that eats up the board.

        • Habitant in Surrey says:

          …I have a feelin’ when the lock-out ends, Your combustion will only be a small part of the overall nuclear sigh of relief on this board Trini

          …hold-off for a few dayz, and then …have at it 🙂

          …PS: PK signs !!!

    • wjc says:

      Habstrinfan: First of all self congratulations is, no congratulations.

      1. How do you know Subban is not already signed and waiting for agreement before announcing.

      2. Bettman is going nowhere.

      3. Fehr will go back to retirement after successor found.

      4. A silly example, but everyone has been there. Say you have a fight with a friend and you want to reconcile. Say you go to them but they want you to admit everything is your fault. They sit there with arms folded and refuse to talk.

      You would probably eventually leave and agree to disagree.
      You get a phone call and the person says, lets talk, maybe I have not accepted enough responsibility. So you sit down and begin to talk and patch things up. This took time to accomplish, but you get it done.

      Everyone says why didn’t they do this 5 weeks ago. Well, you can see that simple things are not always simple.

      My bet is Subban is already signed and they will announce it and distract people from discussing the lockout. The same with trades, there will be a bunch of them and people will be back to talking about hockey again.


      • nunacanadien says:

        If Subban was signed we would have heard about it, you know how bad players can be at keeping good news quiet, especially a player like Subban who wants to play in Montreal. But alas, the hand of Therrien, the evil spector, has already cast a bad shadow over our future, crapping over hard working players like Subban, while praising the lack of work by Gomez…..kind of tells you there is pattern here. Bergevin does not want Subban, he wants a quiet office… he can play jokes on.

        Fehr and Bettman are toast. You don’t waste a whole lot of advertising dollars without the rich owners especially the Alberta based owners from not demanding a price, both from their co owners but their players as well. There is a grey line in the NHLPA between who is a real union player and overpaid rich bastards like Crosby and Gomez who promote and encourage this corrupt system.

  4. Bripro says:

    Here’s an interesting perspective on the silent division among owners,
    even if Geoff Molson isn’t mentioned.

    The only Habs’ reference: “Toronto, Philadelphia Boston, Montreal…,” listed one source. “They aren’t entitled to have their businesses get better. The rest of the NHL isn’t healthy enough.”

    “I’m here to tell you: Gary Bettman hasn’t felt this alive since he killed Harry Potter’s parents.”

    • habstrinifan says:

      Great link Bripro! Isnt it amazing interesting that the only one of the original 6 definitely listed in the HAWKS camp is the Bruins. Who is the brown-noser and who is the brown-nosee in the Jacob-Bettman relationship.

      Either way it smells!

  5. ProHabs says:

    I can’t wait until an agreement is done and then we get to hear both sides say speeches that include “and we have the best fans in the world”. Ya, thanks alot a$$h0les.

  6. Ron says:

    LeBrun is now saying the meetings are not over and are still in session. False alarm they say

    • HabFab says:

      They are watching the elections on TV and using the swing states to determine which side wins on each of the issues.

      • Carta-Hab says:


        Haha, well done.

        Mike Milbury, Don Cherry, and PJ Stock….The three stooges of HNIC.

      • ABHabsfan says:

        My theory is that they are secretly at a small rural rink in upstate NY currently having a skills competition to decide the issues.
        Bettman and Daley vs the Fehr Boys:
        1st team to manage 1 full lap of the rink gets an extra 1% of HRR.
        1st team to raise the puck off the ice into the back of the net from the hash marks gets to choose length of rookie contracts.
        They really could be at it a while…

        “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
        Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

  7. Hobie Hansen says:

    Well at least the both sides aren’t in front of the media right now telling everyone that they aren’t even speaking the same language.

  8. Carta-Hab says:

    Pierre LeBrun ‏@Real_ESPNLeBrun
    Statement from Bill Daly: “”Members of the National Hockey League’s negotiating committee met for several hours today with …” Con”t

    “… representatives of the National Hockey League Players’ Association regarding a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The plan is to…”

    ” resume those discussions tomorrow. Out of respect for the negotiation process, we will reserve comment until the subsequent discussions .

    I think this is a good sign!
    Mike Milbury, Don Cherry, and PJ Stock….The three stooges of HNIC.

  9. Ron says:

    Meetings are over for the day. To meet again tomorrow.

  10. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I have been diligently fascinated by US Presidential politics and elections since Dwight D. Eisenhower vs Adlai Stevenson

    …American politics, unlike Canadian politics, influences the world’s future and it’s stability unavoidably

    …the intense chaotic furnace of American politics have realized many remarkable, even great leaders, and the odd fool

    …this is the first US election I have yet to reach a conclusion of the best man to lead America into a very complicated and dangerous world

    …how Romney is still alive in this election after all the gaffes and the background of his Looney Tune Republican Party, is remarkable

    …yet, there is something about Romney

    …hope You Yanks make the right choice tonight

    …good luck

  11. Andy and the habs says:

    Puck optimism, that not what we want to hear

  12. Listening to HNIC XM92 this afternoon. Sounded like Crosby and the Gang went to the meetings to basically tell Fehr to sign the freakin paper already! Anyone else read anything into that show?

    Ryan Pulock shot 101mph on Sunday afternoon. As stocked as we are (on D) I hope he becomes a Canadiens pick next year.

    Amazing player, amazing story.

    Off to the WK game, later troops, my monthly post is over, see you in December.

    They Call Me Shane
    “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures

    • commandant says:

      I don’t know about that, this is far from the first time that Crosby and others have come to these meetings.

      Nor do I think 7 – 12 players are a real influence on a guy with a union of 700 even if it is Sidney Crosby.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • ABHabsfan says:

        Somebody should show Sid that Timmy’s ad from a couple years ago where he is telling the camera at age 10 or so, “wouldn’t be great to be able to get up every day and go play hockey, and even make a living at it? ” Wonder if he still feels the same?

        “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
        Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

      • HammerHab says:

        are these guys the team reps? 7-12 out of 30 team reps would have a decent influence.


        It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

  13. Haborama says:

    sex is like gun, you aim, you shoot, you run

  14. Mavid says:


  15. HabFab says:

    Burn the midnight oil you illegitimate children!!
    Real_ESPNLeBrun – Expectation is that NHL/NHLPA talks will go “somewhat late” source just said…

  16. sreuel says:

    How could he of met with reporters at a undisclosed location

  17. 24 Cups says:

    A deal is quite doable. Once the players accept a 50/50 split on revenues and the NHL agrees to full payment of all signed contracts, the rest is just trade-offs.

    I just hope that the new CBA closes all the past loopholes and is for a 7 or 8 year time period.By then there should be more stability around the league as well as the retirements of both Bettman and Fehr. Outside of the Phoenix debacle, there are mostly only positives ahead for the NHL.

    • Timo says:

      And the leafs. Leafs are not a positive.

      • 24 Cups says:

        They are as long as they keep holding down a spot outside of the top 16!!! That can only be a positive for the Habs.

        As for you, I have to state that I’m a little disappointed. It’s not your style to join the HI/O establishment by childishly celebrating the fact that you were 1st on this thread. I like you better when you wear your rebel without a cause hat.

        It’s like in The Wild Ones when Marlon Brando is asked what he’s rebelling against and he replies, “what have you got?”

        Now that’s a Timo line if I ever heard one!

    • B says:

      Both sides are already willing to split 50/50 and honour all signed contracts. This was in the leagues last offer that would have salvaged the whole season. The problem is how and when they arrive at a 50/50 split.

      The biggest loophole I would like to see closed is front loaded contracts. If they made every year of a contract have the same salary and cap hit the I think that would discourage most of the crazy long term deals. It would also prevent big money teams like Philly from trying to screw over smaller money teams like Nashville. Getting the PA to agree to this change may not be very easy though.

      • Phil C says:

        If you look closely at the “make whole” provision in the last offer, it was making up the difference lost in the first few years of the deal by taking it out of the players share later in the deal, so it was a smoke and mirrors attempt to ram the 50/50 deal through and perhaps drive a wedge into player solidarity. The way it was structured would not benefit the players as a group.

        If the NHL had made a real “make whole” offer the last time, we would probably be playing hockey by now.

        • B says:

          I don’t know about smoke and mirrors, the proposal was very up front and clear that the make whole provision would impact the players available share of revenues for new / future contracts over about two seasons.

          As for a “real” make whole, I suppose that comes down to semantics. The make whole provision was meant to provide a mechanism to ensure that players would receive the “whole” amount of all current contracts while allowing for a reduction in the players percentage of revenues. There would have been no cut back in any existing salary like there was under the last CBA. The sticking point was (and still is) how and when they arrive at a 50/50 split. Both sides had already proposed to pay all (the whole amount) of all current contracts, they just had (and have) different ideas on how to achieve that.

          Of course not agreeing to a deal that offered to play all of the games this season basically ensured that the players will not be paid all (the whole amount) of this seasons contracts. Even if they do salvage this season, the revenue and pay for the games not played is lost forever (unless the PA can somehow get the league to agree to play the players for those games not played, but I don’t see that ever happening).

          • Phil C says:

            You are right that the sticking point has been how to go from 57% to 50%. How to get from $1.8B to $1.6B without players feeling a pay-cut. By the third year of a new deal, $1.8B would be close enough to 50% mark that that current contracts would no longer be affected in absolute dollars. So its really about how to get from 57% to 50% in the first two years.

            The NHL’s solution was to make up the cost of rolling back the player’s share from 57% to 50% by taking it out of the players future share of revenues. That’s what I meant by smoke and mirrors. It’s like saying I”ll give you a raise, but I’ll pay you less later to pay for the raise. The total amount going to the players was going to be the same with or without the make whole clause as it was defined. Of course the players balked at such an offer.

            The NHL describes achieving no rollbacks by withholding more escrow. To a player, getting less escrow back at the end of the year is the same as a rollback. Specifically in this case, players would get 7% of HRR less in the first year, representing a 12% rollback in salary for each player. That’s how they would have gotten from $1.8B to $1.6B.

            The reported reason for the new traction in the negotiation was that the owners are willing to move the “make whole” provision to their side of the revenue split, therefore current contracts would be honoured without taking money out of the pockets of future hockey players. I see this as a real offer and the key to breaking this deadlock. This is a real concession on the owner’s side, so they should get credit as it will likely cost them about $220M over the duration of the deal, depending on how fast revenues grow. But in return, they get the players to 50% in the long run, so it’s seems like a fair deal to me.

            As for lost revenues this season, you are absolutely correct in that the projected HRR will likely be less as a result of lost revenues at the beginning of the season. That will hurt the players final take-home pay. I don’t think that will be a problem though, as a revenue-linked salary system was agreed to in the last CBA.

          • B says:

            Phil, I am nitpicking semantics and terminology again. Escrow and deferral are two separate and different things / mechanisms (and the roll back in the last CBA was yet another separate and different thing / mechanism).

            Escrow in the case of the CBA is a mechanism to ensure that the estimated revenue players percentage is based on ends up meeting there actual achieved revenue. Three things can happen to that escrow amount withheld: 1) it is all returned if actual revenues meet estimated revenues 2) less than held back is returned if actual revenues are less than estimated revenues 3) more than held back is returned if actual revenues are more than estimated revenue. (These 3 possible outcomes are independent of the interest paid on escrow amounts.) Deferred salary is simply all paid back later on, the amount can’t go up or down depending on actual revenues like escrow does.

            Escrow was added as a part of negotiations for the last CBA that linked the players salaries to revenues. They could have used other mechanisms but escrow was the one that both sides were willing to agree on. Note that the league proposed during the course of the last CBA to reduce the amount of escrow held back, but strangely it was rejected by the PA.

            I find it interesting that you describe the potential reduction in a players future salary as taking money out of a players pocket. You can’t take out something that was not there in the first place. I also don’t see the players taking money out of the owners pockets by asking for more than 50 percent to continue for longer than the owners would like it to. I simply see two sides unable to agree on how to split up a huge pile of revenues. Lastly, players not getting as much in future salary is kind of the whole point to the owners negotiating for the players share of revenues to go down. How it ends up actually being done for the next CBA has obviously yet to be agreed upon.

      • 24 Cups says:

        The structure of entry level contracts with the ridiculous inflationary 2nd contract is just as bad if not worse.

    • Cal says:

      I am with you, 24. This should be done by late tonight as long as both sides aren’t obstinate and foolish. However, I don’t expect anything of substance until a few days. Hopefully, Thursday afternoon.

    • Blondie says:

      More than doable. It should have been done a couple of months ago.

      I just hope they get it done within the next week or so so that some semblance of a season can be salvaged.

  18. Da Hema says:

    Who are Darryl Sittler and Wendel Clark?


  19. Timo says:



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