Penguins play key role in late-night labour talks: report

NHL labour talks seemed to be picking up speed as they continued late into the night Tuesday in New York.

A group of 18 players and six owners met for more than five hours Tuesday afternoon, took a break for dinner and then resumed talks at 10 p.m. The talks wrapped up just before midnight and owners and players made contact early Wednesday morning and were expected to return to negotiations later in the day.

Rob Rossi, the Penguins/NHL beat reporter for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, reported that the Penguins played a major role in the talks, led by team co-owner Ron Burkle and captain Sidney Crosby. Co-owner Mario Lemieux also arrived in New York Tuesday and Rossi reported he would attend Wednesday’s board of governors meeting along with Penguins CEO David Morehouse. Rossi also reported that Burkle and Crosby were described by participants in Tuesday’s talks as “voices of reason.”

One source close to Crosby told The Canadian Press: “Sid’s a team guy. He’s about the game.”

You can read Rossi’s report by clicking here.

The Canadian Press reported that the marathon session was accompanied by whispers of optimism.

“I appreciate the efforts of the players in particular,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told reporters in New York late Tuesday night. “We had 18 players in there today and six of our owners. I think everybody is working hard, I think everybody wants to get a deal done so I think that’s encouraging.

“We look forward to hopefully making more progress tomorrow.”

Read more by clicking here.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman met with the media briefly Wednesday afternoon in New York, saying he was “pleased” with how the talks were going. He added that “out of respect” for the labour process, he wasn’t going to say anything more and didn’t take questions.

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)



  1. nunacanadien says:

    The sad part is we still have no scoring leader on our team. We still have no offense and we haven’t even signed PK.

    Our defense just keeps staying small and keeps getting injured….during the lockout!

    Our highest paid player even gets sick playing hockey. We need real players here Geoff Molson! Buy out Gomez!

  2. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …to Me, Gary Bettman’s eyes and facial-language says “I’ve been removed from the steering-wheel’ of the Good Ship Titanic”

  3. Stormin says:

    So tired of the Lockout, and the rich trying to get richer, all my sympathies are with the players, could really go on a vent about Wall Street and Wall Street types but maybe just watch the documentary Inside Job to get e very good perspective on greed infestation in the rich people who need legislation because they can not control their appetite for greed and destruction of all the hard working mans code of what is right in this world..

    This brings me to my rant of the day when trying to switch to Bell Fibe TV , and realizing Bell is trying so hard to force me from my grandfathered clause of unlimited internet or bandwidth. Watch this it is so f…….true Bell and the CRTC

    Some interesting concerns for us all over Bell and UBB usage base billing and Bell trying to force this type of billing on subscribers and third party vendors or re sellers. Bell has tried to use the Canadian Radio-Television Commission as there own billing enhancing tool. Bell knows that internet bandwidth will only explode in the next generation of internet usage, with Netflix and all other streaming and downloading especially if HD media, sports movies etc.. becoming the normal usage for most internet users. What costs 1 – 5 cents per GB Bell will try to impose 2-4 dollar charges per GB penalties, in the USA if UBB tried to become the normal for internet billing, they would burn down the white House in Canada we seem to take infringement on our pocketbooks with an oh well.. All these damn companies cant get nothing untill u complain then they come up with a loyalty clause to give you a better plan such a farce.. OK i can go on forever about this crap
    in synopsis rich people need legislation to keep them from spending there money, or doing unleveling things to society norms……….. …………………GO NHLPA GO

    • shiram says:

      Wiht the price off ssd’s and hard drives, it’s cheaper to buy an ssd, copy over to it and ship over the country, than to pay Bell’s over the limit fees.

  4. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I feel so strongly about this, I have to restate it

    …I want NOTHING to interfere with the WJHC !

    …I want this lock-out to extend to after New Year !

    …are You kidding Me ?, do We really want to watch the half-assed product of the NHL and a diluted WJHC this Christmas and New Year ???

    …tell the NHL and it’s players to shove-it until beginning of January …provide a 3-week training camp to get their larded asses back in game shape before they begin to charge NHL ticket prices !

    …We the fans are the ones that have taken it up Our rectums during this sorry demonstration of sordid mercantilism

    …SCREW ’em …tell the players and the NHL to F’ off until the beginning of January ! …grrrrr 🙁

    • Habilis says:

      I have to respectfully disagree. While this will create some problems for Hockey Canada, it can’t be something that they are unprepared for.

      Those players who are good enough belong in the NHL playing against the best, not in Ufa.

      And the WJHC won’t be diluted, it will simply be what it’s supposed to be.

      • commandant says:

        Agreed, the WJHC would not be diluted…. it would merely be the same level it is every non-lockout year.

        It would be a “normal WJC” rather than a ramped up one.

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

        • Habitant in Surrey says:

          …I prefer a ‘ramped-up’ one Ben

          • commandant says:

            I’ll take a 4 month NHL season + 2 months of playoffs and a normal WJC over a 2 week ramped up tournament and no NHL this year.

            Plus given the Draft Lottery rules from last time, I think playing is win/win.

            1) The Habs shock us, have a good season and we get some excitement from them this year.
            2) If they have another poor year, I believe the Habs will do better on draft day by actually playing the season and there are some damn good picks in the top 10.

            So either way we win as Habs fans by having them on the ice.

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

          • Habitant in Surrey says:

            …I did mention it’s ok to play in January Ben 🙂

    • Cal says:

      Sorry, but give me the NHL over anything except the Olympics with NHLers in it. The WJC is a nice 1 week tournament. The NHL goes on and on and on and on……

  5. habsfan0 says:

    Former union head honcho Buzz Hargrove said a few days ago that it was a “big mistake” not to have Fehr & Bettman involved in ongoing negotiations.

    Here’s to you Buzz!

  6. Mattyleg says:

    Bettman (face scrunched up): “Oh yeah? You think it’s so easy? Why don’t YOU go in there with a bunch of the players and see how YOU do??”

    Owners: Uh, okay.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  7. HabinBurlington says:

    The late Tom Cheek finally gets the Ford C. Frick award. What a great voice he was to listen to on the radio for BlueJay Games.

    Always seemed like a class act as well.

  8. The Dude says:

    Is the new Markov knee injury a fact??? Links….

  9. HabinBurlington says:

    So when the groups get together again this afternoon they are keeping Fehr and Bettman out again. Keep going with the hot hand boys and keep those two far away!

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      How bad would that look on Bettman if this thing got settled in two days with him being absent? Maybe the owners will realize he’s useless and finally kick him to the curb with the trash where he belongs.?

      • Ozmodiar says:

        On the surface it looks bad… but when you consider the fact that this meeting was his idea…

      • Cal says:

        How bad would it look on Fehr? Maybe the players will realize he’s useless and …

      • B says:

        Or maybe the owners might think Bettman did a very good thing in getting these players and owners talks going at this time? Of course it could still all fall apart, but none the less, it does seem to have been a good thing to do.

        –Go Habs Go!–

      • Five_hole says:

        MacLean reported on Fan 590 around noon ‘according to reliable source’, Bettman had until December 1st to strike a good a deal as he could get. After December 1st he was mandated to just get a deal done.

        ‘There are 10 types of people in the world….those who know binary and those who don’t!’ –unknown

  10. Kfourn says:

    Just for added hilarity, if a deal does indeed happen it would mean that that Burton guy was right 😀

    Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

    “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Yup! 9 slices of pizza and intimate knowledge of Kessels Cahuna’s and now this.

      He will soon be on NBC SPorts with Pierre MacGuire!

      • Kfourn says:


        Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

        “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

      • Blondie says:

        He’ll have to get a Kreskin licence like Cal’s. 🙂

  11. Kfourn says:

    @TSNBobMcKenzie “Negotiations between NHL-NHLPA are at such a sensitive stage NHL govs weren’t even given specifics from yesterday’s session at today’s BofG”

    Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

    “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

  12. commandant says:

    Twitter is saying players have been told by coaches to return to North America and get ready for camp..

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

  13. Hobie Hansen says:

    Wasn’t the douche bag commish supposed to speak at 1PM?

  14. Kfourn says:

    @drosennhl – John Davidson of the CBJ says the Board was updated and “we feel good about the information we got”

    Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

    “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

  15. frontenac1 says:

    A Heads Up amigos. Tonight on Sportsnet ,Armada vs Volts and get this…… PK will be mic”ed up”Between The Benches” Should be cool.

  16. kempie says:

    RIP Dave Brubeck. He had a good run.

  17. RetroMikey says:

    Get rid of the unions globally and the world would be a better place to live and work for your employer.

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • Cal says:

      Labour unions were made necessary by draconian working conditions up to the early and mid 20th century.
      How would you like to work for nothing from sunrise to sunset 7 days a week? How about working all night, too, thanks to Edison’s little invention?
      Look at how much pay Chinese workers get making everything.
      Unions are necessary. To the extent that workers cannot be fired for incompetence, no, but up to there, yes.

      • RetroMikey says:

        Unions are made specifically to cater and protect the lazy fart workers out there, that’s all in the private sector.
        Any individual who works in the public sector in any level of government (Federal, Provincial, or Municipal) in Canada will agree but not be vocal about it.
        Unions will become obsolete…..welcome to the private sector in today’s world where more and more Unions will be broken.

        “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • TommyB says:

      ummmm…..yeahhhh……and while we’re at it, let’s get back to 16 hour work days in the mines, child labour, and no holidays or days off. No health benefits, and maybe just be happy to have your employer throw you a crust of bread. Those were the good old days eh, Mikey.

    • wjc says:

      Retro: Get rid of unions and people would be working Christmas day.

      Unions played a huge part in bringing up the standard of living for ordinary people. Non union have benefited also, either pay them a living wage or they could unionize.

      Unions are not the cause of all problems, they can also get carried away, overall ordinary people have benefited more than been hurt by them.


      • RetroMikey says:

        What is Christmas to you? Christmas is celebrated not only on December 25 but other days like January 7 or even January 6.
        Do you think if you had a Union they would respect your day off on this day?
        What about the non-Christians out there?

        “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

        • Mattyleg says:

          I bet Jews don’t get days off for Hanukka and Yom Kippur, do they?
          Or Muslims for the end of Ramadan!
          Unions don’t support non-Christians!
          Get ’em Mikey.
          Get ’em in their lazy no-work-unionized butts.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Mustang says:

      As much as I dislike unions, they certainly do protect the average working stiff from ruthless businessmen intent on lining their own pockets, no matter the cost to others. Unions have also been instrumental in improving workplace health and safety.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      Proof positive that trolling works.

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      In the Western world I agree. Unions served a purpose a hundred years ago when health and safety were major concerns as well as common sense worker rights.

      At this stage in the game, now that workers rights have been established and safety per-cautions are standard, unions are irrelevant. Without government support the US auto industry was almost single handily driven out of business as a result of ridiculous labour contracts.

      They force businesses to run inefficiently, which is a shame.

      • wjc says:

        worker rights and safety are maintained by unions, they are not perfect, but then what is besides some self righteous posters.


      • RetroMikey says:

        Unions many years ago protected the Unions, not no more. Look at the former Hamilton, Ontario Stelco plant, (AKA US steel) where many lost their jobs and did the union protect their jobs?
        Non-union companies like the local Hamilton plant (ArcelorMittal) AKA Dofasco) kept a low profile and watched the destruction of US Steel and now are thriving with no complaints by the workers there. Ask anyone who works for Arcelor if they prefer a Union and they would laugh at you. Non-union companies work and protect their employees better than the old days and more of these companies have excellent Health & Safety programs to protect the workers and added security in their jobs than Union companies.
        More NHL hockey players would jump the Union ship and I see that happening soon. The Unions will be a thing of the past (in the Western world)

        “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • reddog24 says:

      Yea! I’m sure you would like to work for $12 hr. and no benefits. That what you get without unions.

  18. Timo says:

    Lockout-shmockout. Did you guys/girls know that Kate Middleton is pregnant?!?!?!

  19. Habitant in Surrey says:

    QUIZ: …what do Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr have in common with Anthrax, Botulinum, Ricin, Sarin, Cyanide, Strychnine, Amatoxin, and Poison Hemlock ?

    …Note Bene: …just answer the question ! …there is no punch-line here

  20. DorvalTony says:

    Molson on the sidelines biting his manicured nails as usual.

    Union fat cat$ like Eric Cole just don’t get it.

  21. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I wuz modded !!! …grrrrr 🙁

    …Dey pablumized My comment earlier in this thread ! …man, I’d love to grab whomever edits My stuff by the hairs of Their walnutz

    …problem with living on the Wet Coast, iz being asleep while the crime is committed …grrrrrr 🙂
    Michel F.Therrien ???: HIS’ new Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song; Morrissey/The Smiths ‘Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now’:

    HIS’ alternative HIO Official Theme Song: ‘MTL Stand-up !’:
    HIO’s BC Odd Couple: UCe, the supercilious stickler; and HIS, the stubbornly relentless ‘schismatist’ 🙂
    What I WANT ! is an aircraft carrier at centre and nuclear destroyers on each wing going to the net like bats out of Hell !, …NO MORE rubber duckies !!!
    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    Campaign to Retire Toe Blake’s Number 6 !!!

    Bring Back Boone, and send Hickey to Hamilton !!!

    …and, last, but not least: FREE PUSSY RIOT !!!

  22. Bripro says:

    Woo Hoo.
    First time in three days that our very expensive and service-based internet provider (Bell) has let me access the internet.
    It’s so wonderful when a small entrepreneur can’t access his emails, and can’t contact his favourite hockey addicts.
    I’m writing this at light speed, before I lose the network again.
    One quick comment:

    Daly’s comment: “I think everybody is working hard.”
    Has he ever seen someone truly work hard?
    I’ll invite him to a food-processing factory of one of my customers. Now THAT’S working hard.
    Stop showboating and get the darn deal done!

    Oh, hi everyone, how’s it going?

    • Cal says:

      All good, Bri. Awaiting a deal with baited breath. NOT!
      Still hopeful, though. 🙂

    • shiram says:

      But they worked untill midnigh!! After that 4 hour supper break…
      Heh glad to have you back Bripro! Hope the connection remains strong!

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      My Bell internet is usually very good, but something happened in our town in the fall and everybody went down for more than a week. When I say “went down,” what happened was that it would shut off twice every hour for several minutes. You’d be in the middle of something and the world would stop.

    • Blondie says:

      Good luck with the connection, hope it stays around for a bit. Losing access to your email, for a small business, is not trivial.

      Hoping they’re close to a deal now. If there’s another cancellation it’ll likely be the season.

    • wjc says:

      There is physical and mental hard work…..each has their merits.

      Too bad you do not realize how hard it is to break a stalemate.

      First world war, soldiers in one trench, enemy in another trench, it took 4 years to finally break stalemate.

      “Just get the deal done” is not always easy.


    • Timo says:

      Bell by far is one of my favorite. Up there with TD bank.

  23. HabinBurlington says:

    Today’s Board of Governors meeting would be a great meeting to be a Fly on the Wall for.

    It is often reported that Bettman going into these meetings essentially has already planned how everything will go. He apparantly is well organized and essentially knows how each owner feels and has them in line so as not to speak out of place per se.

    I wonder if today’s may not go that same way. Just a hunch, but i wonder if Bettman is starting to lose that firm grip he has had in the past over all the owners.

  24. Ian Cobb says:

    Don’t forget that Sid and Mario live together, unless Sid lives in Pittsburgh in his own place now.
    Anyway, my point is Sid would have been in much discussion with Mario for years on the workings of the NHL. Sid could do worse than listening to Mario as a mentor, and the game would come first with both Mario and Sid, so I am pleased both are involved in the dialog and meetings.
    And besides they have their feet much more grounded where the game is concerned.
    Yes it’s a business, but they know the roots of the game far more than these ego, money grabbing lawyers and carpetbaggers.
    We will all know in the next few days if the money or the game comes first.
    Love to be a fly on the wall.

    • wjc says:

      Money comes first then the game.

      Sid and Mario love money and the game.

      Lawyers….hired by owners and players.

      Carpetbagers with (players and owners)

      We will know in a couple of days that money won. Money always wins…game is played for…lets hear it…….MONEY! Not saying it is wrong just saying how it is.


  25. Kfourn says:

    Alright going to eat some pizza, but if this lockout is not over by the time I get back…so help me god…I’ll go and eat another slice!

    Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

    “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

    • Mattyleg says:

      Crosby’s got your waistline in mind, pal.
      That’s why he’s there.

      That’s why he’s there.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      If you manage to eat 9 slices, you will now be as good a source on lockout information as the Burton character out of Boston. Not sure if you saw the article about this, if not my post will make no sense to you. Sorry 🙂

      • Kfourn says:

        Haha ya I saw that, I’ll give it a try 😀

        Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

        “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

  26. mark-ID says:

    Does anyone know which Bulldogs games are going to be televised on TVA Sports throughout December? I tried looking it up, and it seems there is only 2 games scheduled? is this accurate?

    “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

  27. ed lopaz says:

    for me, the most telling number about how owners are “really doing” is that about 10 of the 30 franchises are up for sale – including the LA Kings.

    2 aspects of this have me thinking the NHL is having trouble with its business model.

    1) where is the demand to meet the supply of 10 franchises up for sale?

    2) if the owners felt that this was a solid long term investment would so many of them be selling right into this labour troubled time?

    When I visited Sunrise Florida a few years ago during Christmas vacation time I was able to get a FREE ticket to see a hockey game with the purchase of a Florida newspaper for $1.

    Many, many franchises simply can not give away their tickets, even during the holiday season, when everyone is out of school, out of work, and looking to spend money.

    And if the arena is not full, the place is not rocking, and the few who have attended don’t want to return. That’s why filling the seats, even for free, is extremely important.

    Owning an NHL franchise is an excellent business investment for about 10 owners, a very mediocre investment for about 10, and a bad, money losing proposition for the bottom 10 on the list.

    • nunacanadien says:

      The USA and Canada went into small recessions when we both elected a Republican and in Canada a Reform Party govt.

      No wonder. But honestly, Canadian teams footing the bill, or markets like Pittsburgh who also contribute to the have not hockey teams like Canada gives to the have not provinces. We all know this is a not a good business model to follow.

      Time to let the struggling USA teams fold. Keep hockey strong, and stop voting for these conservative and republican idiots!

        • Thomas Le Fan says:

          Well, he’s been very careful not to make things worse which can’t be said about the dude to the south. That’s more than can be said for a lot of our alternatives, ain’t it?

        • Cal says:

          The only reason is that Canada’s chartered banks weren’t allowed to make those crazy derivative deals that killed many banks around the world. Thank heavens Harper hasn’t been able to deregulate the banks so they could.

        • The Dude says:

          The only reason Canada’s in good financial standings is because of the Chretien and Martin YEARS! Harper is a Texas based puppet who needs to be tried for War Crimes”his government sent people to the Bashir’s Syria to be tortured” PUCK HARPER!

          • Thomas Le Fan says:

            Well tell us how that lib/dipper kool aid tastes why doncha? Is anything ever your side’s fault? Harper gets bashed for things he hasn’t done or even considered? Mr. Harper is doing a good job, like a coach who’s taken over a team that continues to win, but now everyone’s apparently anxious to replace him. Does that actually make sense to you? Regardless, until the left gets its shit together you can look forward to years of Conservative rule with less than 50% of the vote and continue to go … wah wah wah about it. Good on you.

      • ont fan says:

        If the dollar wasn’t as strong as it is we would have 3 or 4 struggling teams here in Canada.

    • Chris says:

      Ed: I think part of the issue with professional sports teams is similar to what I see in high-tech start-ups here in Canada.

      There IS money to be made on the short-term in both areas…it is the long-term, when you actually have to start putting up some money or producing a product, that things go south.

      When it comes to sports franchises, the ownership groups often come in with a whole lot of perks. There always seems to be somebody who can get money together, and the price of these franchises continues to skyrocket. There is consequently a huge incentive to flip the franchise and earn a big payday.

      The current Kings owners, Philip Aschutz and Edward Roski, bought the Kings in 1995 for ~$114 M. Forbes has that team valued today at ~$275M, and I suspect that they should be able to get $250M plus for the reigning Stanley Cup champions in one of the largest markets in the world if the league is able to charge $150 M for an expansion club.

      I don’t know what kind of losses the current ownership have incurred over the past few years, but I wonder if it is losses so much as recognition that now is a great time to “cash-out”.

      I have no problem with a number of teams losing money, as about a third of the league’s teams are run so irresponsibly that it would be a farce if their owners actually were rewarded for their incompetence.

      The NHL has decided it wants a parity model, where every team has a chance to win. This forces the teams that are abysmally managed to spend more money, something for which they have repeatedly demonstrated gross incompetence.

      If the owners don’t want to share their profits around (the league as a whole IS profitable), that is their prerogative. There is more than enough money on the owners side at 43% for every team to take some money home, and 50% will ensure that every team should do very, very well.

      Perhaps they should move to the European soccer model and just let teams spend money as they see fit. People wouldn’t like the competitive aspect of it, but it does become tiresome hearing that it is the players’ responsibility to help the owners make more money as a group.

    • commandant says:

      3/4 of the league has been bought and sold since the last lockout.

      Yet the prices of teams keep going up and up and up each time.

      Not just in the vast profits the Teacher’s Pension Plan saw on selling the Leafs, and not just in the vast capital gains that George Gillett saw in selling his share of the Habs, but also in the supposed poor teams where the Coyotes are going for 30 million more than they went for just 3 years ago, or where mid market teams like the Sabres have seen big gains in value too.

      The claims of so many teams losing money, are extremely convenient at the time of negotiating a new CBA, especially when the books on these private corporations are not auditted, and when they are (Florida Panthers) they show ~9 million in profits attributable directly to the hockey team.

      Lets remember the claims in the 2004 Levitt Report and how post lockout they were shown to be completely and utterly false.

      Lets remember Bettman’s claim of how much the league lost in 1994, and how that has also proven to be false.

      There is a pattern here, the owners come up with a lot of public statements, and leaked statements towards the end of a CBA, to play the public relations game and get further concessions. Its a known strategy.

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

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Tampa’s price went down Ben.

        • commandant says:

          1 team run by HORRID ownership who fought like cats and dogs.

          1 team who is the exception to the rule.

          The average selling price around the NHL has skyrocketed.

          As I said, at least a percentage of 3/4 of the NHL teams have been sold since the last lockout. And nearly all the teams have seen large capital gains in that time. Yes there is always an exception, but they appear few and far between if even a team like Phoenix is up 30 million.

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

          • HabinBurlington says:

            LOL, okay whatever. Was simply pointing out a fact, just as you pointed out they all were going up in price.

          • commandant says:

            Sorry I didn’t mean to imply it was 100%, just that the average and median are both going up, the vast majority have gone up, and overall the numbers suggest that the league is very healthy.

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

          • Cal says:

            Think Ottawa would be a money winner? Carolina? Nashville?
            There’s always two sides to the negotiations and I cannot help but feel that the players are just as greedy as the owners. And with absolutely no financial risk and a guaranteed contract.

          • commandant says:

            Players take plenty of risk (if not financial)

            What do you think would have happened with Marc Savard if we didn’t have guaranteed contracts.

            I think its disgusting how the NFL can treat players like pieces of meat and cut them without pay when they get injured taking risks playing for their teams.

            I also dispute the fact that they have zero financial risk. Under the last CBA, if revenues went down, escrow went up.

            Also no contract is guaranteed 100%. There is always the 1/3 or 2/3 buyout provisions (depending on age).

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

          • Ozmodiar says:

            NFL contracts are often inflated and come with signing bonuses to make up for the fact they aren’t guaranteed.

            It’s not disgusting. 🙂

    • wjc says:

      Which ten franchises are up for sale?


  28. Mattyleg says:

    Renaud Lavoie tweets: “Geoff Molson, Kevin Gilmore and Marc Bergevin from the Canadiens just arrived at the BOG.”

    Shame this is only Geoff’s second season behind the wheel, because two years down the road he’d have significantly more clout to get these dumbasses moving.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Chris says:

      Honestly, Molson will probably never have much clout. Montreal simply isn’t a big player in the NHL’s power circles.

      The only way for Molson to throw his weight around would be to form a cabal with the owners of Toronto, Detroit, New York and Vancouver. As the big five profitable teams, they might have a voice if they were pulling in the same direction.

      This is basically what is occurring in European soccer. The top teams are constantly sabre rattling by threatening to form a elite pan-European league with only the richest clubs, locking everybody else out from the profits. It has been a very effective stick.

      Perhaps the big five-eight NHL clubs should investigate the idea of forming a super-league with the storied clubs in Europe.

      Follow the NFL model: hype the living crap out of the league, but limit the teams to one game per week. Shorter seasons, but every game means a lot. This also makes the travel issue less of a big deal.

      One of the reasons I think the NHL struggles to catch on is that they simply play too many games. Hockey is not much less punishing than football, yet hockey players play 3-4 games per week. If we’re being honest, many of the games between October and February are snooze fests, as the players just go through the motions and avoid trying to get hurt.

      • Mattyleg says:

        I’ve been a supporter of a shorter season for a long time.
        Never going to happen in the current climate, though.
        It wouldn’t help teams like Montreal and Toronto, who wil lose out on sold-out games, but would definitely help smaller franchises, ensuring more sold-out games and fewer empty arena games in which operating costs outstrip seat-sales.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Cal says:

        Europe has “storied” hockey clubs? Who knew?

      • wjc says:

        Chris, you have quite the imagination.


        • Chris says:

          Just pointing out some future directions that hockey could take.

          The NFL has set up a beautiful model 16-20 games, plus 3-4 preseason games, and you can still support revenues that allow salary caps in excess of $100 M per team. Ridiculous.

          Imagine if the NHL moved to a one game per week model, making Saturday hockey day, with a single game on primetime in another couple of nights.

          You drive up the demand to consume hockey if you withold the supply.

  29. Thomas Le Fan says:

    So … if they settle and have a season after all, are we all to go running back to the NHL like faithful little lemmings? Both sides have p***ed me off to some degree with their own little stupidities. Greedy and Greedier? How do we as the long suffering fans react to this? How do we ensure that this isn’t repeated in a few years when whatever kind of agreement that gets signed expires? Does there not have to be some message sent to both of these parties that they can’t just continue to take us for granted? How is it done, if we all go running back like some poor schmuck whose girlfriend’s cheated on him but now calls him back saying it’s all been a mistake? We’ll deserve what we get.

    • Mattyleg says:

      We can’t really do anything TLF.
      I have a feeling that there will be many empty seats for the mini-season.
      I probably won’t be going to any games.
      I certainly won’t be queuing online for tickets.

      The ones who stand to lose most are the scalpers who will buy up all those tickets and expect to sell them for the same as they ever would.

      This, of course, would make me pleased as punch. It’s probably the best thing that could come of this mess.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Thomas Le Fan says:

        Well, the few become the many when the plague spreads. Revenues must be affected. How is it done? I dunno. Stay home. Don’t buy a hat or any product associated with the NHL. Don’t watch it on T.V.? That one’s going to be hard but I think I can do it.
        I think many of us have made a mistake in taking sides in this issue. Most of us want to support the players over the owners but in this situation, I believe that to be a mistake. Neither has had us in mind. I’m not sure which side is taking us more for granted.

        • Cal says:

          My vote is to watch on tv, but to never buy a ticket or any of their swag again. They deserve nothing from us.
          Besides, my cable package includes RDS, so it’s not like they aren’t getting my money already. Just not a lot of it.

          • ont fan says:

            If you don’t want this again in 5 years, the paying public better send a message. That means tickets and merchandise. Until that happens you get what you deserve.

          • Mattyleg says:

            I’ve bought one Habs t-shirt in my life as a Habs fan. I bought it last year at the summit because everyone else was wearing one.
            The jersey I own was given to me for free.
            I bought a Habs cap for the raffle last year.

            Those are my NHL merch purchases. For life.
            I’m not going to have too much trouble holding off on buying more in the future.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Blondie says:

            @ont fan

            Umm, if we, the fans, punish the NHL by not buying tickets and merchandise and have an impact on profitability what do you think will happen in five years?

            Teams will still be losing money, the owners will want to take it out of the players share again, and we’ll be right back where we are now.

            I think a good, hearty booing – 3 minutes worth – at the start of each and every game, including playoffs, would go further to shame them into behaving.

        • wjc says:

          You sound so sad….will it help if I say “there, there, Thomas.”


    • wjc says:

      As a long suffering fan, when they go back to playing, I will immediately forget about all of this. I will forgive and forget.

      You cannot assure lockouts/strikes will never happen, so why waste your time and energy.

      This “poor schmuck” will cheer until I am hoarse, and squeal like crazy person with first goal scored by the “blue, blanc, rouge or whatever. Naa na nan na hey hey….hello.


  30. Kooch7800 says:

    For anyone wanting bulldogs tickets this is a good deal:

    The holiday themed 10-ticket flex pack is on sale now for just $99. Call 1-866-DOGS-TIX this morning to receive a gift with purchase.

  31. RobertAlanFord says:

    Galchenyuk and Hudon got invites to their WJC training camps. I can see Gally making the US team but Hudon has quite a bit of competition.


    • Hobie Hansen says:

      They’ve been saying Hudon is a shoe in to play on Team Canada’s 2nd line…

      • commandant says:

        Hudon’s performance in the summer (where he was in the top 3 forwards on the team if not the best)… along with his great work in the Subway Super Series (and getting under Nail Yakupov’s skin), means he’s virtually assured a spot on this team. He’d need a disaster of a camp to get cut.

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

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Hudon will make team Canada. He was great vs Russia in that series and is tearing it up in the Q lately

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • jedimyrmidon says:

      About Hudon, Bob Mackenzie definitely likes him a lot and so does Kevin Pendergast (?), the head scout for Hockey Canada. Didn’t see Spott’s comments, but that would be three key figures who like him as a player, and I don’t think it’s just them pandering to the media. Oh, and during the Canada-Russia challenge, the match commentators, without really knowing who he was, were really surprised at how good he was.

  32. Hobie Hansen says:

    Speaking of Doug MacLean…

    I heard him tell an interesting story about his days in the Red Wings organization. He was mentioning comments that Mike Ilitch, the Wings owner, made when putting the Steve Yzerman contract together.

    Ilitch was having an issue with Yzerman making more money than he did when he owned the damn team.

    I agree with MacLean and Ilitch that there is something definitely wrong when players are making more money the the guys who own the teams.

  33. L Elle says:

    This made me laugh. Sorry if already posted.

  34. Hobie Hansen says:

    Hopefully if a deal gets done they announce it ASAP so our Canadian Junior team isn’t in complete scramble mode. I wonder if that is in the back of any of the players/owners minds? I know Bettman wouldn’t give a damn or Fehr either.

    If no deal is done, we’ll have plenty of good hockey to watch with the World Juniors and the AHL over the holidays.

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      I see most of the junior games are live at 4 and 5 am et….do you know if TSN will be re-broadcasting the games at prime time?

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        I’m sure they will be. I took the entire week of Xmas and New Year’s off so I’m going to be a weirdo and wake up in the middle of the night or early morning to watch…

  35. slamtherimtim says:

    back from Jamaica and still no hockey

    thanks to the guy who told me about scotchies , had a half chicken and a burning ass the next day

    • Mattyleg says:

      Ah, the ol’ Scotch Bonnet.
      Do not eat.
      Great for spicing up a curry, but has to be put in whole and removed before serving.
      I ate one once… the next two years are a blur.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      That was I Slamtherimtim, awesome wasn’t it! As for the Ring of Fire, well hopefully you were singing Johnny Cash! Pretty cool place though isn’t it?

  36. Chris says:

    Watching that Doug MacLean diatribe a little ways back, two things jump out at me:

    1) Wasn’t he one of those idiots that liked handing out or trading for terrible contracts? MacLean railing about overpaid players is pretty rich given his penchant for shelling out big dough for guys other teams weren’t willing to touch.

    2) Somebody needs to explain the concepts of average and median salary to MacLean. He kept going on about how the average player makes $2.4 M.

    Not quite. The median salary, the level at which 50% of players are paid more and 50% of players are payed less, is actually $1.4 M. Still very good coin, but given the short careers and the time required to get there, It’s not the instant lottery winnings that everybody make it out to be.

    Nobody should feel bad for the players. But the majority, if not the vast majority of them, make less than the $2.4 M average that critics use against them.

    There is no reason for this lockout. The 50/50 split was coming eventually, but the owners poisoned the water with the contract negotiation demands. That these demands make no sense on two key fronts (they are completely unnecessary if there is a hard cap and an inability for teams to bury unwanted cap hits, and they necessarily preclude the NHL from its stated goal of eventually expanding into Europe) is proof to me that there is a cabal of owners who don’t really care about this season but instead want to inflict some humiliation on the players while they get the revenue split they wanted.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      The one thing that sticks out in all of Maclean’s arguments is he is constantly mentioning that 10 to 15 teams are losing money and can’t pay their bills.

      I know a chunk of these teams handed out stupid contracts but a statement like that does give more credibility to the owners stance, I think?

      • commandant says:

        Well thats assuming what MacLean says is true. I have a hard time believing it given the evidence we have and haven’t seen in previous lockouts and today.

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

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          Ok, lets say some of these teams Maclean is talking about are turning a small profit. Is it fair that they are barely turning a profit and there’s a guy on the team making $8 million a season.

          Playing the devil’s advocate here…

          • commandant says:

            Is it fair that players on the Toronto Maple Leafs, or New York Rangers, or Montreal Canadiens (teams that are making money hand over fist) have to take pay cuts so that the small market franchises make bigger profit?

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

          • Hobie Hansen says:

            If they players don’t take a pay cut in order for the smaller teams to survive we’ll end up with a 10-team-league won’t we?

          • commandant says:

            Few things

            1) You agreed to work on the premise of “lets say some of these teams Maclean is talking about are turning a small profit. Is it fair that they are barely turning a profit and there’s a guy on the team making $8 million a season.” Why do the teams with small profit, fold? Why are we down to 10 teams?

            2) The players already took one in 2004, and have agreed to a gradual reduction to a 50/50 split. Why do the players need to give back more. What about some revenue sharing at a meaningful level.

            3) Why would teams who are losing fold, when a team in Quebec City or Hamilton/Markham/GTA would be sure to earn profits?

            4) Why do we need to limit free agency, arbitration, and other contract rights of the players in this CBA. How are they important if you get the 50/50 split?

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

        • Ozmodiar says:

          He’s worked in the front office of one of these money losing teams. I’m sure he has a pretty good handle on the financial challenges some of these teams face, especially when you consider he was part of a group that tried to purchase the lightning.

          • commandant says:

            He worked for one of the worst teams in the league. Columbus shouldn’t be as bad a market as they are, but part of the reason for lack of fan support is 1 playoff appearance and no playoff wins in a decade.

            Whose fault is that?

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

          • Ozmodiar says:

            Doesn’t matter. I’m just saying he’s an insider with respect to knowing the financial situation of some of these teams.

            His work as GM is beside the point.

      • Chris says:

        10-15 teams SHOULD be losing money: they were run incompetently.

        Ditch the salary cap and let teams spend whatever they like. Problem solved.

        Teams like Columbus and the Islanders will still suck, but at least their owners can make some money while stinking out the joint.

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          If you ditch the salary cap we’ll be neck and neck with the Rangers or Leafs down the road, spending to our limit, and then they’ll add two or three players each at the deadline that we can’t afford.

          Been there done that and don’t wanna go back.

          • commandant says:

            In the 4 years before the salary cap.

            There are 16 spots in the NHL’s conference finals.

            14 different NHL teams made it to the conference finals in those years.

            It is liberal FREE AGENCY and not a Salary Cap that create more competitive balance.

            We see in the days before Free Agency (late 80s) the dynasties of the Oilers, Islanders, Canadiens, etc, etc… that occured. It was far harder to have competitive balance when players didn’t move from team to team.

            On top of all that, Money doesn’t guarantee success. Look at the two teams you bring up. The Rangers spent the most money pre-cap. Won 1 cup in 1994, and continually missed the playoffs in the precap era.

            The Leafs couldn’t even make it to the finals in those years and haven’t been there in 45 years now.

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

  37. HabinBurlington says:

    Perhaps someone can help me out here, the Quebec Labour Board meetings (or whatever they are called) which the players now are trying to delay as talks appear to have some momentum. Is this in a provincial court environment? The reason I ask, if indeed they are, I imagine dates, rooms, judges etc. are booked for these specific days. So now because suddenly the players may not need the Labour boards help, they ask for a delay. I have to imagine court rooms will now sit empty etc…..

    My point being, I hate to see rich players/rich owners using/wasting tax payers money as such. Either you are filing an injunction with the Quebec Labour Board or you aren’t. You don’t just file it and then maybe use it or maybe not. THere is a cost to the system by doing this, and I am quite sure the total cost is not covered by the NHLPA.

    I understand negotiating and how they used this, but if indeed a last minute cancellation or delay in such a hearing wastes peoples time and money they should have to foot the bill for it.

    I hope this makes sense… 🙂

  38. Luke says:

    Going to see a Montreal product stun & amaze a Toronto audience tonight at the ACC.

    Leonard Cohen, 10hours and counting…

    • Cal says:

      Saw him last Wednesday. Absolutely terrific show. Be ready for a 70 minute opening set, then a 20 minute break and a nice 100 minute 2nd set.
      He played 28 songs and the whole band was great throughout.
      Have a great time!

      • myron.selby says:

        He must have been tiring by the time you saw him Cal. In Edmonton he did 3 encore sets for a total playing time (excluding break) of about 3 hours & 10 minutes. He actually got stronger as the show went on.

        One of the finest shows I’ve ever seen and I’ve been to literally hundreds over the years. Right up there with seeing Tom Waits (3 times) on the 99 Get Behind the Mule tour.

  39. Ron says:

    Some tweets are suggesting that if they both want to get a 60 game regular season underway the NHL will need to get a proposal submitted by end of day and NHLPA a counter one to get it done. Time will tell if there is any sincerity on either side.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      It was reported awhile back that 60 games is a magic number with owners, as that is roughly number of games required with most of their major sponsorship deals Any deal with less games and they either get less from sponsors or have to rework the deals. I would imagine a formula in place, but thankfully another trigger point to actually make these bozos defecate or get off the pot.

  40. Habfan10912 says:

    If reports citing Pens leadership being key players in movement, could that spell the end of the Jacobs reign?


  41. Habfan10912 says:

    More signs to be optimistic. Reports say that NHL is attempting to postpone hearing in front of Quebec Labour Relations Board.
    Negotiations resume at 9. Many reports say meeting positive but work still to be done.


  42. Cal says:

    Has anyone else been facing a blank screen on HIO’s home page?
    If I wasn’t able to find a back door in to log on, I’d still be facing that blank screen.
    **EDIT- If any mods or anyone working at the Gazette sees this, please report the problem.

    • Ron says:

      Had same problem Cal, they finally must have figured it out. At first I thought it was my Comp. No season but site still wonky.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Cal – I faced the same problem this morning and emailed Dave Stubbs about the issue.

      I have also found the site to be slower running than any of the other regular sites I visit (such as TSN or the Star).

  43. HabinBurlington says:

    It seems pretty clear that when Donald and Gary aren’t in the room, the dialogue seems to be better. I seem to recall a few weeks ago when Bill and Steve had dialogue and things looked positive, then the two Giant Heads joined in and things went downhill.

    The other key also appears to be late night meetings. This reminds me of the Seinfeld episode when Elaine hires Jerry’s father Morty. In order to get rid of him, they hold late day meetings which at his age he can’t handle. Perhaps this is the key to keeping Jeremy Jacobs in check, so dont meet this morning, he will be sharp, meet late tomorrow. 🙂

    • Ozmodiar says:

      Gotta love any Morty reference!

      Funny you mention Jacob’s sleep schedule. I considered the possibility that the meeting gained traction after Jacobs fell asleep. 🙂

  44. Cal says:

    Meat Loaf for dinner? Again?
    Actually the NHL and the PA remind me of an old married couple that wants to renew their vows, yet neither will sign a pre-nup.

  45. Marc10 says:

    Gotta tip my hat to Super Mario, Burkle, Crosby and Pat Brisson if they get the parties over the line. And if I’m the Habs, I’d find a way to acknowledge their contribution when the Pens come to town… Like honoring them at center ice for bringing common sense back. It’s about time!

  46. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I want NOTHING to interfere with the WJHC !

    …I want this lock-out to extend to after New Year !

    …are You kidding Me ?, do We really want to watch the half-assed product of the NHL and a diluted WJHC this Christmas and New Year ???

    …tell the NHL and it’s players to shove-it until beginning of January …provide a 3-week training camp to get their larded asses back in game shape before they begin to charge NHL ticket prices !

    …We the fans are the ones that have taken it up Our rectums during this sorry demonstration of sordid mercantilism

  47. commandant says:

    2 assists for Bozon (both the primary assist) and a +2 in a 2-1 Kamloops win.

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

  48. jols101 says:

    I always thought the season would start Jan 1st but now I believe the deal will be done on the weekend and the puck will drop on Dec. 15th after a week long training camp. However, I could be 100% wrong, it wouldn’t be the first time.

    If it does happen the WJC will be thrown into chaos. Teams will have to scramble and make some adjustments. I really hope our Habs would let Galchenyuk play for team USA. This year should be a transition year used to unload some spare parts. Let Gally finish his Junior season and start fresh next year.

  49. Habilis says:

    Meeting’s over for the day, continuing tomorrow.

    “Renaud Lavoie‏@RenLavoieRDS
    For the first time. Bill Daly and Steve Fehr are talking to the media together.”

    Both were cautiously optimistic, as you’d expect, but them standing side by side has to be a good thing.

  50. HabinBurlington says:

    Having Lemieux involved even if indirectly can only help. As I recall during the one lockout it was Gretzky and Lemieux who got involved to try and broker a last minute deal.

    Lemieux while now an owner understands the players position, he himself was screwed out of millions by a former owner until he found a way to gain control of the Penguins.

    If only Fehr and Bettman can be kept out long enough for genuine progress.

    • commandant says:

      If this deal gets done because Bettman wasnt in the room, then he gets replaced as commish? right? I can hope?

      We already know that Don Fehr is retiring shortly after the CBA is signed with Steve Fehr (currently in the room) taking over.

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

      • Habilis says:

        Oh wouldn’t that be sweet? A nice ten or fifteen year CBA and a brand new commish to boot, maybe one who can even get on the big kid rides at La Ronde.

        You think Daly would be the man?

      • Dust says:

        This Meeting, having Bettman and Fehr out of it, was Bettmans idea. Give the guy some credit. He was able to take his ego out of it and be willing to step out of the negotiating room for progress. I’ll still boo him like normal, but i give him credit for this idea

    • Habilis says:

      Agreed about Lemieux, he can only help.

      And yeah, it would be super duper awesome if these guys could get somewhere without the two giant egos around. It makes sense too, because the animosity for both Bettman and Fehr is at an all time high right now.

      From what I’m reading around the net right now, this Burkle guy might be the key to all of this. The dude apparently knows how to deal.

      I’m not getting my hopes up yet, but at least it seems like both sides have a sense of urgency to get this done.

  51. Fake says:

    What am I supposed to say again? Whatever I’m still 1st.


  52. habsfan0 says:

    What?? First?? Nah!

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