NHL rejects latest offer from players’ association

NHLPAweb

The NHL Players’ Association tabled a new proposal on Thursday that it hoped would end the lockout.

They were wrong.

The Canadian Press reported that the league rejected the offer and that no future talks are planned.

NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr told reporters in New York that  the players “responded comprehensively” to the issues that had been the focus of meetings over the last couple of days, including player pensions and transition payments. He added that the proposal the players presented was “a clear outline” to end the dispute.

 It was an eight-year proposal with an option for opting out after Year 6.

The Canadian Press reported that Fehr received a voicemail from the league saying the moves the players made were not acceptable and there was no reason to remain in New York for more talks. Fehr said Thursday’s development suggests the dispute will “not be resolved in the immediate future.”

Read more by clicking here.

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

162 Comments

  1. Marc10 says:

    Please let me know when the owners actually give something in this negotiation. So far they’ve made tremendous gains.

    I think Fehr will get the deal that’s just been rejected when he pulls out the decertification grenade and threatens to kill the season.

    It will be game on in Jan. They’re arguing minor points when you compare this to what the lost season will do to the League.

    • deuce6 says:

      It is too late to go ahead with a discertification..For this season, anyway..The league and the PA had a deal in place, but Fehr simply came in and boldly told them to hold out for more…A gamble that will kill the season…He cares nothing of the game and is simply in it to stroke his credentials and ego…

      Players need to wake up and kill this megalomaniac before there isn’t a league to actually play in…Every day that goes by, they lose another dozen fans…I am a die hard, but it is has even me questioning my allegiance to this league….I’m at the point where I am telling them to kiss my ass..lol

      ——————

      Yes, I’m a Hab fan..Wanna fight about it?

  2. deuce6 says:

    Just want to touch on the people that think the owners should “honor the contracts they signed”…Did Dany Heatley honor his contract after wanting out of Ottawa? Or how about Chris Pronger wanting out of Edmonton after signing a contract with the Oilers???

    Truth be told, both sides are at fault for this mess and the NHLPA need to lose the sense of entitlement…The only thing the PA is fighting for is the few lucrative contracts (Crosby, Richards, Weber, etc..) The average career length in the NHL is 2-3 years…Why in the bloody blue hell would they care if the CBA is 5 or 10 years? Or if contract lengths need to be reduced??? This is a fight for the few, on the PA’s side..

    If the players “just want to play hockey” then bring it, don’t sing it…All that is a PR..They care nothing about playing, just their “me” attitude…

    ——————

    Yes, I’m a Hab fan..Wanna fight about it?

    • Chris says:

      Yes, they did.

      They asked for a trade and were granted that trade, netting their respective teams assets in the process.

      A trade demand is different than not honouring your contract. Every professional team trades players that they’ve signed to contracts. How many coaches has Montreal fired?

      The caveat is that in all cases the worker still receives their agreed upon salary because that was what the owners agreed to in the CBA. The players have not agreed to allowing the owners to re-negotiate their contracts, and yet the NHL is insisting that they must. This is part of the stalemate.

      • arcosenate says:

        By not actually playing for the team they signed the contract to play for because they decided, or their wives decided, or someone else’s wife decided, that they did not want to play for that team anymore, is not honouring your contract.

  3. b_whalen13 says:

    As per Cory Pronman

    Both in OHL at age 18: Nail Yakupov Goals per game: .74, Points per game: 1.64. Alex Galchenyuk GPG: .73 PPG: 1.76

    • Chris says:

      Except for the fact that Yakupov is only 4 months older than Galchenyuk, who turns 19 this year. So he’s comparing Galchenyuk’s 19 year old season to Yakupov’s 18 year old season.

      That is garbage analysis from a garbage analyst. How many goals and points per game do you think Yakupov would have this season?

      In 21 games in the KHL this season, Yakupov has 10 goals and 18 points. He was hands down the best player in that draft. He’d be torching the OHL this season if he was still there.

  4. Ozmodiar says:

    I know few here like Damien Cox, but since fewer like Allan Walsh…

    Damien Cox ‏@DamoSpin
    @walsha Hey, @Russotrib has integrity, unlike yourself. Look it up sometime. Take it out for a spin.

  5. ThirtyThree says:

    They’re not negotiating, they’re fighting. And my opinion is, the owners win this fight. So the players stance seems pointless.

    Also people often talk about how they think this season is over, and theres this unspoken implication that it will be settled for next season. But why should this be the case; it seems likely next season is in jeopardy as well if both sides continue fighting instead of negotiating.

    The only way players win this fight is if they stick together long enough to form a viable league for themselves. And to me something like that looks like it would take a few years to get started, and then a few years after that to get to a point resembling where they were last season. Unless the players are willing to do this, unless they are absolutely willing to go all the way, they should cut a deal before this season is lost.

    • Timo says:

      But see, players don’t know that. Someone should tell the players.

    • wjc says:

      A player rebellion will happen. A lot of players not being heard. Many players would have accepted this deal. They would have accepted the 82 game deal offered in October also.

      This “impasse” could have ended in October. Many players are not being heard or shouted down by the multi-millionaire players.

      Most players know they have it great. Back in the day before the players became too rich, for there own sanity, they had a great league. Sure, the players should have done better, but now they just keep wanting more.

      Your hero’s are being exposed for what they are. You want the owners to lose this, fine. Let the tale wag the dog, see where that gets you.

      Most players, just want to play and secretly know they have it better then even they dreamed possible.

      The whole players association will have to stand up and let majority rule. This is very sad, but pay back is a bitch. Some fans are easily led and do not think for themselves.

      No one can predict where this is going or how it will end. The “dove” owners had their eyes opened and that is a good thing. Some of the fans (suffering ha ha) have had their eyes opened and will never feel the same way again.

      wjc

  6. Ozmodiar says:

    Meh. The breakdown in talks just tells me they’re not at the 11th hour yet.

    Something tells me the moderate members of the PA will soon become more vocal. Perhaps after they talk to their wives about where they’ll be living next year…or maybe after they see Thomas the Tank Engine toys on their kids’ Christmas lists.

  7. Muckbringer says:

    They dont want to agree because they dont want me to play Boney M!

  8. Mondou6 says:

    I’m also surprised at the prevailing attitude of “the owners get to make all the rules, because they own the teams, and the players have no choice but to accept it.”

    To take it to an extreme, what if owners say, “All players will make $100K/year from now on, and no guaranteed contracts.” Some people may still say, “Well, the players have no choice, and $100K is better than nothing, or better than they could make outside of hockey, so they would be stupid not to accept that deal.”

    The problem with that logic is the owners do not compete against each other in the marketplace. They are all the same entity, “the NHL”. There is no competing hockey league for players to go to, so the NHL is basically abusing its power of monopoly.

    At some point, maybe now, the players can challenge the legality of what the league is doing.

    And again, this is no “negotiation”. The owners are taking and taking, on every single issue. The players are getting nothing in return, just less money, less job security. The league has plenty of money, they just want to keep it all, and break the players. Again. Except this time, it’s not going as they planned.

    • Cal says:

      The thing of it is, the minimum wage is what, $550K? It’s hard for me to drum up much sympathy for the players. They get what they deserve for being obstinate.
      They don’t own or run the rinks they play in. They have no financial obligations other than to themselves and their families. The owners moved to $89 mill more for make whole. The players responded with Fehr’s crap. Let them live with it.

    • Habilis says:

      “The owners are taking and taking”

      You’re kidding, right? The owners are negotiating in order to pay these players billions over the next cba. Billions. Is it wrong that they all want to make money as well?

      Even after all the “taking”, the owners offered a 10 year deal today with 100 million more in make-whole, rookie contracts unchanged, arbitration unchanged and 5 year contract limits.

      Does that really sound like an offer from a side that doesn’t want a deal? Or is the side that rejected the deal to blame?

  9. Muckbringer says:

    As of Sunday the lockout officialy came to a grind. if you havent heard, the season is over. I hear that it may start as soon as early February. Watch this and tell me if you read it as well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKmg5wXm34A

    Conan: Almost 20 years of pitiless cumber! No rest, no sleep like other men. And yet the spring wind blows, Subotai. Have you ever felt such a wind?
    Subotai: They blow where I live too. In the north of every man’s heart.
    Conan: It’s never too late, Subotai.
    Subotai: No. It would only lead me back here another day. In even worse company.
    Conan: For us, there is no spring. Just the wind that smells fresh before the storm.

  10. commandant says:

    Whether they had an agreement or not, one thing is clear, they were closer than they were in September, October, etc….

    So pulling everything off the table especially the make whole is a B.S. move.

    Its pretty clear there is one goal from the NHL here, and that is busting the union and killing any power they have not just today but in all negotiations going forward.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • Cal says:

      Owners added $89 mill to make whole and the NHLPA pulled an Oliver Twist. If putting $89 mill more isn’t significant, perhaps zero is a better number for them. A union filled with millionaires really isn’t much of a union, is it? How many unions have individual contracts and perks that are as different as night and day between members?

      The PA should have taken a vote on the offer last night. Instead, it’s the same old same old.

      • twilighthours says:

        Honor your contracts

        • christophor says:

          You mean the ones drafted according to the last CBA, which included the stipulation that contracts are subject to the negotiation of a new CBA? Those contracts?

          I actually agree with you, at least as much as is reasonable, but don’t act like anyone’s being duped (or attemptedly so). If any player with a shiny new contract didn’t think this was possible with all the hype going into the CBA talks, then there’s at least some egg on their face.

          • twilighthours says:

            To reiterate, I can’t support a man who negotiates in bad faith. Not sure how anyone can.

            That’s the make or break issue for me

            That, and I don’t care who owns the teams – the best players are the product.

      • Muckbringer says:

        The only good thing that could come out of this is the fans joining a uninon. This is the only legal market where the customer doesnt matter.
        Lovin the avatar

      • commandant says:

        The NHLPA is willing to go on the 50/50 plus 300million offered.

        Why is 5 year maxes a hill to die on? By adding terms that cap hits survive retirement, you’ve already eliminated the back diving contracts?

        So what is the NHL fighting for here? The financial issue (BY FAR THE BIGGEST ISSUE) was agreed to. The NHL presented an offer, the NHLPA agreed to it.

        Why pull everything now? Its negotiation in bad faith.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
        http://lastwordonsports.com/

        • Muckbringer says:

          The real bosses here are us and we have no say. Same ish with our taxes. Us supporters are getting splattered on in every direction. Time to take the ball and go home.

    • Habilis says:

      The owners pulled everything off the table after the players rejected their offer. An offer that by all accounts, was pretty darn fair for everyone and had another 100mil for the players.

      That’s negotiating, not union busting.

      If you want to blame anyone for having an agenda, take a long hard look at Donald Fehr. That is the man who will be responsible if this season goes down in flames.

      • Muckbringer says:

        I blame me for caring

        Conan: Almost 20 years of pitiless cumber! No rest, no sleep like other men. And yet the spring wind blows, Subotai. Have you ever felt such a wind?
        Subotai: They blow where I live too. In the north of every man’s heart.
        Conan: It’s never too late, Subotai.
        Subotai: No. It would only lead me back here another day. In even worse company.
        Conan: For us, there is no spring. Just the wind that smells fresh before the storm.

    • christophor says:

      “blah blah blah…(something utterly indefensible and conspiracy-like about the lucrative return on investment secretly had by most NHL owners, contrary to all indications… I mean, Forbes is bad, but you’re talking like there’s a lineup of potential investors at Gary’s door. I mean, seriously)… blah blah blah… Gary, bad; union, good… etc. and so on…”

      It’ll be hard to take anyone seriously in the future who’s so strongly backed a horse in this race.

    • Muckbringer says:

      This whole thing is just insane. From the start, just, over the rainbow, bars in the window, kind of crazy on both sides. I hope the players and owners could only try to fathom what the arena workers and small businesses have been feeling since October.

      ARE THESE THE KIND OF PEOPLE WE ONCE LOOKED UP TOO???????

      Screw them all, suffer…

      The juniors are coming up and I truly hope we don’t have a season.

  11. HabFab says:

    Stubbs will soon be posting an audio for the kool…aid gang featuring Cole, Gorges and Gionta. Instructions will be given on; how to swallow without gagging; poison is really good for you and Don Fehr, the Saint.

    Thank you and good night!

  12. Say Ash says:

    Nice of the players to dress up for the meeting.

  13. Billy Bob says:

    I also say fire Fehr and Bettman,all theyve done is ruin the nhl.. idiots..

    habsman

    • Muckbringer says:

      The NHL Really doesnt mean anything anyway. Picture this…

      A FIFA type setup where they play for the cup. Without the corruption. Oh wait…

      Forget the negotiations. What shall become of the cup?

  14. Mike D says:

    I’ve been surprised by how many posters here seemed to be more of the pro-owner side, but it appears now as though the vast majority are pro-owner. I’m a little perplexed by that….but by that same token, many are probably wondering why/how I can still be more pro-player.

    Let’s be real here – there are no “good guys” in all this. Both sides manipulate the fans thru the media by spinning things in a way that suits their purposes.

    Truth be told, I think both sides have asked/demanded things that I think are good ideas. If players are expected to honour their contracts, owners should honour them too so I agree with Make Whole, which is a player ask. I also hate cap-circumventing/back-diving contracts so I like the idea of a small variance over the years of a player’s contract, which is an owner ask.

    That said, while I agree that owners have conceded things to the players, those concessions are only from their own proposals, the very first of which was insulting. Somebody please show me ONE thing the players are ‘gaining’ in this new CBA relative to the old one. Additionally, look at what the owners are going to be gaining relative to the old CBA.

    And this is specifically for Bill Daly: When the reporter asked you why the owners were so adamant about the 5 year maximum contract length, try not responding to him (and therefore the fans) like a child by saying “because that’s what they want”. Why not give us all a real answer? Considering you had just said it was the hill you were willing to die on, you HAD to expect a question as to why.

    - Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Speaking for myself only (obviously) it isn’t that I am pro owner, but rather i have the attitude that the owners own and players play. Owners will win this war eventually, the challenge to the players is to make some battle wins within it. Just as they did in the last CBA.

      Seems to me that the longer the players go from this point forward, their deal gets worse. If the full season is lost, they most definitely get a worse deal. So be smart about it players and get the best deal you can.

      If not, start your own league and prove them wrong. Not easily done, but that is why they are the owners and the players are the players.

      I may not like it, but to me it is a business, and for better or worse that is how it works.

    • HabFab says:

      I have the same problem with the PA supporters :)
      And this will impact my sleep tonight, go figure “sigh”
      And as for the honoring salaries, for any salary signed this summer both the player and his agent knew the NHL would be coming for a rollback. In fact in June, the NHL asked the PA not to activate the Salary Cap increases for 2012-13 until CBA negotiations. And it was substantial with the new TV deals so that every team had to spend an additional $7 ml plus replace any cap from contracts running out. But of course that is all the teams fault…poppycock!!

      • Chris says:

        But that doesn’t explain all the other existing contracts that **were** signed in good faith by the players that the owners are looking to dodge. This summer is one thing, but what about guys signed over the past 5 years?

        The NHL can not have it both ways. If it insists on beating around the bush, just declare all existing players as free agents, sign a deal and then let the teams figure out the mess over a 2-3 week signing period. Or wait a month. Whatever it takes.

        • twilighthours says:

          I won’t even concede the summer contracts. “oh, you knew we *really* weren’t going to pay you all of that $100 million. We just can’t afford it.”

          What a slimy move by these owners

    • twilighthours says:

      Impossible for me to feel sorry for a group of people who got everything they wanted in the lt CBA and then turn around and say it wasn’t enough. Also impossible for me to understand why it should be the players’ responsibility to save the owners from themselves.

    • jon514 says:

      You’re right.

      I think it’s for all of these reasons.
      1) People don’t care who wins or loses. They just want someone to be declared winner, someone to be declared loser and for there to be hockey again.
      2) It’s a lot easier to envision a resolution where the millionaires cave to the billionaires than vice versa.
      3) In a sick way people want to see the players brought down to earth. “They get paid millions to play the sport they love while I have to go to a job I hate for 50 000/year with no OT… how dare they complain about it!”

      • twilighthours says:

        And yet there are more billionaire business owners in the world than millionaire NHL hockey players. And not a single one of these billionaires can do what Crosby, malkin, ovechkin, etc can do. But somehow we are supposed to begrudge the players and sympathize with the owners.

  15. EricInStL says:

    I really hope people remember it’s a lockout. The players didn’t choose this, it was imposed on them. The owners put in the conditions the last time and they screwed themselves. Now those bozos want to redo their error.

    Forget the sport you love, as it’s not a sport it’s a business, that cares about itself not you. Wanna show them you don’t care. Don’t watch, don’t go, don’t buy.

    Merry Christmas, use the money you saved for something useful for you and your loved ones.

    • Billy Bob says:

      very true EricInStl..very true..they need to be shown who really pays their way..

      habsman

    • mksness says:

      you should read some of the tsn comments… most support owners.

      the reality is hockey players are entertainers. like the movie/music industry they make a lot but it’s due to the money going into the industry.

      If i were the players i would sign the deal and strike at the playoffs.

      • ZepFan2 says:

        The money going into the industry is from the fans. The fans are putting their butts in the seats at extravagant prices to see the players, not the owners.

        I do like your last idea.

        ———————————————————————-
        Ka is a wheel.

        Fans Theme: “You’re Breaking my heart, You’re tearin’ it apart” – Harry Nilsson

        You’re breaking my heart

    • otter649 says:

      Last time the players & owners agreed to negotiate a new CBA during the season the players went on strike since then no new cba = lockout. Players & owners both know if there is no cba there will be no hockey playing going on……

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    One thing I can’t help but think is constantly being overlooked, is the actual cost of running a hockey team in the NHL. Seems the number many or all of us are focused on is the percentage of revenues which players get, and how this number is shrinking.

    I have no idea what the actual costs are, but I do know some basic things pertaining to these costs, they are rising very fast also.

    Hotels, not only is a typical hotel rate rising most every year, but the hotels these players stay at pretty much top of the line.
    Airline/Charter flight, no brainer here that these costs are rising at a ridiculous rate.
    Equipment, sticks etc…. wooden sticks to composite that shatter like firewood, new kevlar equipment etc…
    Arena costs, players insurance rates, injury callups travel, coaches, trainers,

    I am not saying owners should get all they ask for, but it is also a fallacy to think that the cost of running an NHL is either staying the same or decreasing, there is a much greater cost to running a team in todays NHL.

    • Cal says:

      We’re talking NHL players, Burly. The PA appears to have the stance that all owners are willing to just throw money at them and take care of the players as if they are royalty.
      Most are seemingly from Outer Space or the Twilight Zone and have no real grounding in the real world. I’m getting sick of these players standing behind Fehr in every media presentation trying to look tough. I wonder how they’ll look in a fortnight when Fehr’s bungling costs them 100% of 1 season?

      • mksness says:

        so if you can’t afford a 100million dollar contract don’t offer one out. owners did a great job messing up the contracts, not the players…

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Contracts involve two parties correct? No doubt, owners have made egregious errors in contracts. But the minute one contract is signed, players through their agents begin demanding the very same contracts and teams through peer pressure of fans etc… buckle and made the bad decision to sign them.

          Example, many think PK Subban shouldn’t get more than 4million per season on his next conract, others think 5, some 6 million. So if Molson announces PK signed at 5.75 million after this lockout, most will simply be happy he is signed. What if PK regresses, contract is the max length allowed, is said owner not stupid for signing him?

          I personally would rather see no Cap and no guaranteed contracts.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      don’t forget that hard earned money you earn goes to increased ticket prices every year as well to help cope with these rising costs. ;)

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • HabFab says:

      That actually was in an article at the start of this mess. I’m sure there is some fluctuation between teams but it was either $19 or $29 ml…can’t make out the first number in my memory cells ;)

    • Chris says:

      HiB: I just wish the NHL would release the real numbers…show us the real profits and losses for every NHL team last season. Not the spin numbers, the real ones.

      If the sum of the profits is greater than the sum of the losses, the NHL should be profitable but have a revenue sharing problem. Which is not the players’ problem.

      If the sum of the profits is less than the sum of the profits, the NHL obviously is losing money and they have a structural problem that can only be solved by adjusting the relative revenue shares. This is the players’ problem.

      The owners make their money by selling these teams. There is an old adage that you don’t own a professional sports team if you’re looking to make money. They are essentially the castle in France or the Lear jet for billionaires with a sports fetish. Losing a few million per season is peanuts for these guys. They lose more on business trips to Monte Carlo.

      If they get tired of the team, they then flip it and almost inevitably walk away with a handsome profit unless it was completely mismanaged (New York Islanders, Phoenix). And the players never see a dime of **that** profit, nor should they.

      • HabFab says:

        The PA sees the real numbers.
        The only comment from the NHL is that “teams lost a total of $120+ ml in each of the last 2 seasons”.
        Forbes numbers actually are pretty close to this in losing teams lost over $120 ml while teams making money was over $240 ml (2/3′s of that TML, MC and NYR)
        Before Commandant starts, my take on Forbes would be they are probably incorrect on over 90% of their numbers but over 90% accurate in the bigger picture.

        • Chris says:

          But that is just it. If those numbers are to be believed, the NHL had a roughly $120 million profit last season, split 30 ways. So it is a revenue-sharing problem.

          Every 1% change in relative shares of revenues would be $1 M extra in each owner’s pocket (~$33 M league-wide, based on last season’s $3.3 B revenues).

          So it boils down to what an NHL owner’s per-season take should be. I would argue that $4 M is a handsome profit on an ego business. They’re not getting that kind of return on their Lear jets. :)

  17. otter649 says:

    The players must love The Fehr kool-aid – since the early 90′s players salaries have been going up every year with every CBA signed except for a couple of seasons where they got no eschrow back. Find it hard to believe that the majority of the players do not want to sign the new CBA after this length of time & money lost as they are holding out for a minority group of players with high salaries not counting the hotel upgrades (from 2 to a room to 1) & more fluffier towels to dry off with after they take their showers……..

  18. frontenac1 says:

    Seeing Bettman up there Shaking like a dog sh*tting a Peachstone?…Priceless!
    Go Broncos!

  19. jasonpatrick says:

    First off, this “process” they keep talking about should be away from the cameras and media coverage. It does nothing except give people like Donald Fehr the opportunity to spew out their propaganda and all it does is end up angering the most important people which in this case are us, the fans. In the end the only way these two sides are going to learn is if the fans come together and stop buying tickets and merchandise so that in future disputes they think of the fans interests before themselves.

  20. Chris says:

    I just wish both sides would stop blowing smoke out of their rear ends.

    If they really want to get a deal done (and I’m not convinced that the owners do, nor am I convinced that the players are in a hurry in an effort to demonstrate their ‘solidarity”), stop with all the BS and just state what your positions are so I can decide where you’re being a clown.

    Questions/Comments for Gary Bettman

    You’ve got 50/50.

    As a lawyer, Gary, you were certainly very vocal about the fact that players must be expected to honour contracts (see Alexander Radulov). You don’t get to pick and choose when a contract is honoured. That’s kind of the point of law. It provides a framework of rules that both sides have to follow, even when it isn’t convenient. So the make-whole issue is really on the owners. They made the mess by signing long-term deals, they have to fix it.

    Why do you need maximum contract term length? Is it not fair to say that the players signed to long-term deals often do so at below-market rate in return for job security? How many contracts are considered problems in the eyes of the owners…show me the numbers.

    Questions/Comments for Donald Fehr

    Why do you insist on long-term deals? If the NHL doesn’t want to get the deal on a long-term deal, they can deal with paying out bigger salaries in exchange for the lack of security.

    If you’re willing to go to 6 years, and the NHL is offering 8 years (because let’s face it, one side or the other is opting out as soon as they can), can we just split the difference and say 7? Hell, just take the 8 and start working behind the scenes on funding a rival league for the NHL if your membership is really as resolute at not being treated like cattle as we keep being told.

    My Take

    Both sides in this enterprise are lying through their teeth. A deal is within reach, but we’re not at a drop-dead date yet.

    The owners want the season to be as short as possible because it hurts the players financially (and yes, many of the owners ARE that petty and vindictive at this point) and reduces losses for those franchises that bleed money. No deal is going to help a team like Phoenix, but the ill-will is going to pummel some of the weaker U.S. franchises this season and cause more teams than usual to lose money, even with a 50/50 split.

    The NHLPA has no leverage right now, but their leverage is building. The playoffs are meaningless to the players because they earn very little money from the most lucrative time of the year, with the owners raking in cash hand over fist. This is why the owners locked the players out instead of risking a strike. But with the players now having lost many of their pay cheques, I’m sure vengeance is starting to come to the fore in many cases.

    There is a short window here left, maybe another 3-4 weeks. After that point, the financial gain for the players is minimal and you can bet they are not coming back to earn the owners a ton of cash.

    • HabFab says:

      Sorry Chris but playoff revenue is included in HRR, so the players get their cut.
      The extra revenue a team makes in the playoffs (their HRR share) actually does make or break (financially) half the teams.
      These owners all have outside revenue and don’t relay on their team supporting them (Molson in my opinion would be the closest to that scenario) and they will let hell freeze over before a PA win.

      • Chris says:

        Playoff revenues are included in the HRR, so yes, indirectly there is a big reason for the players to go as a collective.

        Individually, not so much. Players earn their salary regardless of whether they make the playoffs or not. There are bonuses for teams that make the playoffs, split among the players, but these are paltry next to their salaries.

        But it is individuals that vote, and the NHL players are hopping angry. I honestly believe most of the players will give up a season in exchange for denying the owners and the league their biggest payday of the season.

        We’re not talking about the sharpest tools in the shed here. We’re talking about professional hockey players. :)

  21. HabFab says:

    Dave_Stubbs – #Habs alternate NHLPA rep Erik Cole via text message on tonight’s events: “Pretty much what I expected.”

    So if it was what you expected, why did you put a spin on it so that it sounded like you had a deal when you knew you didn’t. What a bunch of crap!!

    Really really got to stop reading what the Habs players say…just kills my respect and a sports fan needs his players to be HEROES!!!

  22. SmartDog says:

    Where is this sudden ‘it’s all the players fault’ attitude coming from? I know Bettman’s PR machine is working over time (it is). But seriously.

    Fehr may be an ass too. But why are people suddenly siding with the league. The players have agreed to go from 57% to 50%. That’s a big step. And the league is all pissy because the players won’t buy into the other things they (the league) wants. Should the league just be able to dictate changes? Or is it really a give and take? And if so, WHERE IS THE GIVING TO THE PLAYERS? WHERE? Like my old (jerk) boss used to say “you get to keep your job – that’s your bonus”. Seriously what have the players gotten in return for their acquiescence? Anything? And ridicule by Bettman doesn’t count.
    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      I agree with the SmartDog, cancel the season and move on !!

    • HabFab says:

      Did you even watch the two press conferences?

      • HabFan in Edmonton says:

        I am not going to waste my team watching all the press conferences, it’s all spin anyway.

      • SmartDog says:

        I did. I used to be a journalist. It’s hard to tell what exactly the players are doing – they seem a little confused – but from the league I see spin, spin, spin which makes sense, the league is a well-oiled PR machine. Either way the press conference is just both sides saying what they think. You need to look at the details and read the analysis.

        I see that the owners are pissed that they gave up some things and the players still are having trouble with some new elements and responded as such. But isn’t that a negotiation – that you put a proposal on paper and the other guys moves the line on a couple of things and sends it back?

        On the one hand the league looks down its nose at the players as not being savvy, but then when the players do something the league doesn’t think fits their script they act like the players are geniuses who should know better.

        ————————————-
        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

        • HabFab says:

          Me thinks I read the analysis and search out the details. Still baffled by the variance between the two…dislike Bettmen but my take was that he was more truthful then Fehr…cripes that hurt to even say. As for negotiations, sounds like the NHL said we must have this and this and we’ll drop that. Do we have a deal? So instead of yes or no, PA says we will take the “drop that” but not interested in your “must haves”. Which is their right but then to go to the presser and announces to the world “Think we have a deal”. Sorry but I would have been nastier then Bettmen.

          • Chris says:

            Nasty has always been the order of business.

            How many times since August has Bettman presented a deal to the media and told everyone this is the final offer, no negotiation possible.

            Then they moderate it. But this is our best deal.

            Then they moderate it. No jokes, guys. We’re not changing at all. This is our hill.

            Then they moderate it.

            The NHL owners are smart guys. They hire smart people. They know what they need and what they don’t need.

            Why they have chosen to engage in this PR disaster is completely and utterly beyond my comprehension. They poisoned the well early on, and now Fehr has stood on the rim of the well and has been writing his name in it over and over.

            Fehr is leaving after this. But there is no room in the NHL for Gary Bettman after this CBA negotiation because it has been completely and utterly mismanaged from Day 1.

    • Mark C says:

      Not to totally absolve players and their leadership from wrong doing, but the only “give” I see from the owners is grounded in low ball offers or the fear that the deal on the table only gets worse going forward. I don’t see any elements in any of the NHL’s proposed CBAs where the players gain anything of value relative to the last CBA.

      • HabFab says:

        I never expected any so am not surprised I guess. This was always about a roll back and the players knew that…hence Fehr but then the owners counter with Batterman… and we get shafted!!

      • Cal says:

        Better pensions for the players that need it. Not the Brad Richards or the Cindy Crosbys of the league. A funded pension for all the old guys RIGHT NOW that need it. They are the ones being forgotten. I wonder why the PA didn’t throw them $10K last week?

        • Mark C says:

          I guess all those things = what the owners are gaining.

        • Chris says:

          Now its the current players’ fault that the NHL didn’t treat the older players very well and those players are now in financial need? You know, the guys whose pension plans were routinely and illegally pillaged by the NHL as determined in court?

          This one is a stretch, Cal.

      • Chris says:

        50/50 revenue split, no ability to remove salary cap hits (no retirement outs, no minors, no Europe), hard salary cap tied to revenues.

        With those three clauses, the NHL could abolish the draft and abolish free agency. It would have no effect. The salaries would be locked in, and the league would make money hand over fist.

        From everything I’ve heard and read, those three things have essentially been agreed to, with details (honouring existing contracts) still to be worked out. That’s peanuts compared to everything else.

        The rest is just posturing. If the two sides want a deal, it is there and has been for some time. Both sides continually move the goalposts (the NHL’s new demand for a 10 year CBA at the last minute was a grenade…why wasn’t that proposed from the outset alongside all their ludicrous demands at the outset?).

        We’ll see a deal when the goalposts stop being shuffled about.

        • SmartDog says:

          Great post Chris. You’re bang on here. I’m shocked at how many are blaming the players when the players (and they know this) have given in a lot. The NHL keeps saying “our offers have improved so much!”, like saying we added nutrients and cut 20% of the sugar out of our Choco-fudge breakfast cereal so now it’s a healthy breakfast! So much BS from the league.

          ————————————-
          Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  23. Captain aHab says:

    Oh well….hang em up for this year boys…maybe more. Bring on the CHL.

    —————-
    Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

  24. savethepuck says:

    I haven’t been around in a while because I got tired of the negotiations getting my hopes up, and then setting me up for disappointment again. Needed to separate myself from all that is NHL hockey. I can sense a lot of the same disappointment and frustration from the posts since Bettman’s presser. The thing is, I think the 2 sides are close to an agreement, they know they need to get a deal done, and are back to the BS posturing stage. Both sides are now trying to get the best deal possible. How many times have we heard both sides say ” they don’t want to make or deal”, or Bettman say ” it was our best deal, a take it or leave it, and our next deal won’t be as good as time drags on”. Yet both sides keep coming back with better offers. Over the next 1 or 2 weeks a deal will be made. Hockey will start close to January 1st and go to at least the end of April. Each team will average 14 games a month for a total of 56 games, 4 games against each of the other 14 teams in their conference. I am actually finally confident about it. Both sides are not that stupid to not make a deal considering the consequences if that happens. Back to BS posturing, who blinks first?

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  25. joeybarrie says:

    Honestly. What a bunch of idiots.
    they deserve to go bankrupt and be always known as the ones who ended the glorious NHL.
    They don’t deserve to be part of what we love.
    They don’t deserve the fans.
    They don’t deserve any loyalty whatsoever.

    Wish there was a way to fire them all.
    Absolutely a huge disgrace.

    I hope they are proud of the embarrassing sham they have created.

  26. HabFab says:

    JSportsnet – Interesting dynamic in the Bettman Press Conf. SFehr,MMalholtra,RHainsey,CCampoli,DWinnick listening intently (at the back of the hall)

    • Kooch7800 says:

      This entire negotiation is a joke

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • SmartDog says:

      Bettman really should try harder to alienate the NHLPA. I’m sure there’s some way he could be more insulting. I mean there’s still a faint hope. C’mon Gary, do some more damage to the goodwill this week has produced, please! Put this all out of its misery so we can get more serious about other sports. I haven’t watched so much soccer in years!

      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • Cal says:

        Yet Fehr remains unblemished to your black and white dog’s eyes? Gimme a break. Fehr is half the reason the season hasn’t begun yet. My feeling is that voting players would accept the deal that the NHL offered last night. $81 million in movement obviously wasn’t enough. Eff the PA; they will deserve the worse deal.

      • sevenman says:

        Don’t forget “smart” dog that it was Bettman’s idea for players and owners to get together this week and create that goodwill that you speak of. Oh yeah, it also took two days for Fehr to decide on wheteher it was a good idea or not instead of just saying yes right away like they should have.

  27. HabFab says:

    And the 4 moderate owners say;
    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=647180

    Interesting read from the Laff guy who DD reports that he heard he actually turned purple at one point.

    • JoeC says:

      Those responses where handed to them right before they left the meetings, don’t be fooled, they knew this was going to happen. Its a PA stunt, just like Fehr saying “WE ARE ALMOST DONE” damn, i hate both sides, but im starting to hate Fehr more then the NHL

    • SmartDog says:

      Interesting. I applaud Vinik for being positive and not finger pointing. Of course the worst for this is the Maple Leaf guy, what’s-his-loser.

      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  28. Cal says:

    Fehr’s reaction to the “package deal” was to pick and choose which parts he liked and which he didn’t. “Package deals” are always all or nothing. Fehr keeps trying to have it both ways. The air is out of the balloon.

  29. Habilis says:

    How many people truly believe that the majority of the players would have said no to that last NHL offer if they had voted on it?

    The players pushed the owners to the brink, they had the best possible deal staring them in the face. Then they pushed some more.

    I don’t see how any objective person could support the players after tonight.

  30. HabFab says:

    Can anyone explain the logic of Fehr saying they were close to a deal when they weren’t….really having a hard time getting my head around his end game here?

    • habsfan0 says:

      Fehr was the catalyst that initiated the long and slow demise of the Montreal Expos. He’ll play the same role as far as some US NHL franchises are concerned.

    • Habilis says:

      Fehr is a liar, that’s why he said what he did. He did it so that the players would see him talking all sunshine and rainbows. All the while he absolutely knew that it would infuriate Bettman, which it did. Bettman comes out all fire and brimstone and poof, he’s even more evil than he was yesterday in the eyes of anyone gullible enough to buy Fehr’s bullspit, which apparently includes most of the PA.

      He’s manipulating the players, the media and the fans and he’s very good at it.

  31. SmartDog says:

    From the “give me a break” file.

    PeterD below says:
    “Pretty clear from Bettman’s news conference that the NHLPA’s arrogance and over-confidence has blocked them from making a good deal and has backfired in their faces.”

    So Bettman’s opinion is your opinion? What if Fehr gets on there and makes it pretty clear that the league is saying “my way or the highway” and holding a gun the players heads?

    I don’t mind if you disagree with me (it seems the thing to do!) But for the love of all that is right in the world please at least don’t take the words from one horses mouth (or the other end) as what is true in this.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  32. HabFab says:

    The difference between the two pressers is so immense that either one side is FOS or incredibly stupid….WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. Hobie Hansen says:

    I tend to side with the owners a tad after that intense press conference with Bettman.

    Yes he’s an actor/lawyer and knows what to say in front of the camera but the part about the average salary climbing to $2.5 mill over the last CBA solidifies the fact that the players are paid more than enough to be set for life and more after even just a few years in the league.

    The players at this point are in the wrong, in my opinion. Pretty solid attempt and offer by the NHL.

  34. GrimJim says:

    Just to throw a little optimism on this doom and gloom parade: When the NHL said that Nov 2 was the drop-dead date for an 82 game season, from Nov. 2 to April 14 was 164 days or one game every two days. From Jan 1 to April 30 is 120 days, enough for a 60 game season (A radio announcer here said that’s a magic number for the NHL because most sponsors would have to pay full rate for a 60 game season). From Jan 1 to April 14 is 104 days, enough for a 52 game season (eight games vs teams in your division , 2 games vs teams in your conference – easy to schedule). From April 30 back 104 days is Jan 16.
    Today isn’t the drop dead date, folks. It’s close but it ain’t the fiscal cliff…

  35. Habfan10912 says:

    And in other news Gally with another goal tonight. Sting up 2-0.

    ———————————–

  36. Sean Bonjovi says:

    Ha Ha, Suckers! :)

    • habsfan0 says:

      Players?
      Owners?
      Fans?
      All of the Above?

      • Sean Bonjovi says:

        Everyone who thought we were going to see a deal. NHL training camp will open next November.

        • HabFab says:

          I have thought at least a year and a half since the spring BUT keep hoping and a wishing that I was wrong!

          Not sure of your optimism right now, the longer this goes the worse it will be for the players IMO.

          Also some of those TO boys were dissing NB last night in case you missed it.

          • Sean Bonjovi says:

            I believe that the NHL will eventually sign the best deal the players have on the table Right Now, but it will take them another 11.5 months to do it.

            P.S. I did miss the NB bashing! Thanks for the heads-up Habs fan. 20% to 30% of New Brunswickers are brain-dead clowns who hate French people, and another 10% to 15% are jackass francophones, and I regularly refer to N.B. as “Canada’s answer to Kansas”, but If anybody from Terona starts bad-mouthing my home province, thems fightin’ words! I’m going to go back and check out last night’s thread… when we get our 1 hour of electricity tomorrow in N.B. that is. :)

          • HabFab says:

            Was born there so a native son…I’m afraid I was not polite and… and said bad bad things :)

            Sorry but the NHL will never ever sign the players best offer…do you grow that stuff you’re smoking there?

    • Habfan10912 says:

      <——-Guilty

      ———————————–

  37. ffenliv says:

    I see posts here and on other sites where people take sides. It is beyond my understanding how anyone can take a side.

    Both sides waited *forever* to start negotiating. Both sides reject proposals. Both sides negotiate in the press.

    The owners have Jacobs as one of their go-to guys. He wants a lockout because he wants to break the players

    The players hired Fehr and that was nothing but a ‘we are going to get back what we gave up last time’.

    They’re both doing what they do because they know fans will be back. I’m not willing to give up on hockey. I’ll be watching when it gets back. Hell I’m commenting here and in other places. Anyone who watches hockey again, anyone who buys a jersey or souvenirs, and people who do what we’re all doing here in driving the hockey media machine are to blame.

  38. PeterD says:

    Based on the TSN news conference just finished by Gary Bettman and Daly and what we just heard about what has taken place over the past few days and especially today…
    I think it’s time for the players to loosen their helmets and let some oxygenated blood to flow in there…
    Pretty clear from Bettman’s news conference that the NHLPA’s arrogance and over-confidence has blocked them from making a good deal and has backfired in their faces.

    At this point I am all in on the owners side…and if the players don’t come back and accept the deal then I am in favour of cancelling the entire season and let the players rot.

    • ffenliv says:

      The players are, in my view, in a bad spot. They pushed and it didn’t get what they thought/hoped it would. Now they’re staring down a cancelled season. The multi-millionaire and multi-billionaire owners can wait it out, and the ones that don’t want to won’t. Not a single one of these owners is completely financially tied to the league.

      The players however are. There is no other option. Some can go to the KHL, but as a whole they’re lose money on that compared to life in the NHL … and they have to move to Russia.

      They can’t go back and take an offer they shot down because of ego. The season is toast and the players will get broken worse than they did in 04/5

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Donald Fehr was able to outsmart outlast etc.. the used car salesman from Milwaukee. I may not like Bettman, but far smarter man than Boob Selig.

  39. Propwash says:

    Unstoppable force vs. Immovable object attitudes and egos coming out of both parties as far as I’m concerned.

    Part of me wants the NHL to fold.
    _____________________________
    “Access Forbidden” gettin’ ya down?
    Hold down Shift while clicking refresh.

  40. habsfan0 says:

    I think one of the inevitable outcomes of this lockout is that 1 or more struggling US franchises will not survive it. Which can only be good news for Quebec City.

  41. GrimJim says:

    I just went through Capgeek and, although I may have missed some, there are 84 players with contracts longer than 5 years, and 26 players with contracts 8 years or longer.

    • Chris says:

      And if you go through them all, there are less than 10 where you can say definitively that the player might try to retire before the end of the deal.

      I think this issue is actually around contract insurance. When Rick DiPietro signed his mammoth deal, the standard contract insurance provided by the league would not cover that contract due to its length. That deal, and all subsequent long ones, have necessitated their own insurance at much higher rates.

      So essentially the cost to the owner of those deals is not negligible. The players would counter that they get the player at a sweetheart rate in most cases, which mitigates that cost, but I think this is probably why the NHL is making contract length a hill on which they are willing to die, as explained by one of the NHL executives (Daly?) today.

  42. commandant says:

    We’re taking all our offers off the table, basically asking for decertification

  43. naweed235 says:

    For once during this whole process I am comfortable saying that this is Fehr’s fault. At this point, when everybody thought a deal was imminent, he made a HUGE gamble, hoping for the “hey we already gave x amount… x+1 wont hurt at this point” effect from the NHL… Well, it all blew up in his face and now we are all deprived of the sport we love because of an old fart’s ego… pfftt… I’m done here

  44. HabinBurlington says:

    I am not sure i have seen Bettman look so angry and/or rattled before. I wonder if Donald Fehr has explained (to the players) what plan B is yet. The owners can survive a missed year, wonder how all the players do with that. Lots of careers over.

  45. Fake says:

    repost from other thread;

    I see commandant and some people arguing below about the NHL not throwing players a bone, and yes you have a point. – This lockout is total BS, yes the players are over paid at 57-43 and yes they’re willing to go down to 50 as long as there contracts are honored blah blah blah, I don’t care about that ish. This is how you fixed the damaged game.

    STEP 1:
    MOVE TEAMS THAT ARE FAILING.
    come on it’s obvious this is why we’re supposedly doing this lockout in the first place. Suggestions – the obvious Quebec City, Markham, Seattle AND other places in Canada that don’t have teams that should – such as Halifax. Canada is where hockey was made and should be played. Period.

    STEP 2:
    PROMISE THE FANS AND PLAYERS THIS WON’T HAPPEN AGAIN.
    put it in contract that the players will never have to go below, say 47% of the share. Promise there will not be a lockout again to the fans and apologize. This ish should be kept behind closed doors anyway. They all just look like a bunch of kids fighting over the last cookie. Selfish pieces of ish.

    FIX THE GAME – ITS SIMPLE. AND BTW:: If they can’t move the teams successfully or don’t at all, are they just going to keep coming back for more from the players? Yes. So the players do have a valid point, but as far as there contracts are concerned they mean jack all. There are clauses in the contracts. That’s why the Owners signed those big deals in the first place this off season. So find mutual ground on that one. So bottom line – fix it or it goes under. Which is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard for such a successful sport.

  46. Psycho29 says:

    Like I said back in September…I’ll miss the Habs’ games, but I won’t miss hockey in general.
    I blame both sides. Spoiled brat players and A$$hole owners are BOTH at fault.
    I have not….and will not buy another official NHL item.
    My girlfriend bought me an NHL holiday calendar (the one where there’s a chocolate behind each of 25 doors). I refuse to open those doors! But I did find a way to cut a slit in the back and get the chocolate that way!!! ;-)

    Seriously though…this totally sucks….

  47. HabsFanMTL says:

    the tiny NHL a*hole comish is gonna speak now but he’s gonna blame the players again the pr**k

  48. habsfan0 says:

    I tink dee NHL season is…how vee say in old country…kaput.

  49. HabsFanMTL says:

    this is all Bettman………he was basketball commisioner he could care less about hockey……..he has had 3 lockouts including one whole season lost and he could care less if they lose another season…..theres no hockey in that little pea sized heartless a hole

  50. HabsFanMTL says:

    the NHL is a joke………a complete farce……they get together without bettman and Fehr and get positive results, they bring back bettman and Fehr and its all blown to hell………F**k the NHL

  51. mrhabby says:

    Lmao….Who cares.

  52. SarahMc33 says:

    …poor little flicker of hope, you died too young. :-((


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