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New CBA or Lockout? "All things CBA"

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Curriclum Vitae. Resume.

Although in the TV world maybe it's a demo tape.

Either way something he will use to get a job in Des Moines.

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Bettman appeared to win the round last night but the fall out is still coming. Looks to me like the big risks taken by both sides last night came up empty.

If the players don't split Bettman loses the biggest part of the gamble. If the owners refuse to negotiate with Fehr I expect it is stalemate.I can't imagine they will throw away a season because they don't like Fehr.

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If the players don't split Bettman loses the biggest part of the gamble. If the owners refuse to negotiate with Fehr I expect it is stalemate.I can't imagine they will throw away a season because they don't like Fehr.

Hmmmm, not so sure about that. They sound very worried about having to deal with Fehr or else we wouldn't have seen all the dramatics last night.

I still feel the same as I did earlier, I'd rather they just cancel the season and work all this out quietly than keep having the fans get dragged through the mud and used as pawns in the ongoing drama.

Curriclum Vitae. Resume.

Although in the TV world maybe it's a demo tape.

Either way something he will use to get a job in Des Moines.

:lol: At the very least he's ripping up the Christmas card from the Jacob's family.

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Curriclum Vitae. Resume.

Although in the TV world maybe it's a demo tape.

Either way something he will use to get a job in Des Moines.

If that's the case, I'll be sure to say hi when I start working up there this summer :)

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Hmmmm, not so sure about that. They sound very worried about having to deal with Fehr or else we wouldn't have seen all the dramatics last night.

I still feel the same as I did earlier, I'd rather they just cancel the season and work all this out quietly than keep having the fans get dragged through the mud and used as pawns in the ongoing drama.

:lol: At the very least he's ripping up the Christmas card from the Jacob's family.

I would have never suspected Jacob's sent out Christmas cards.:blush:

It would be foolish to not deal with Fehr. If that is the goal then the end game is to force him out like they have done to union heads before and render the union weakened. That IMO means they are willing to cancel the season hoping for the same result as 04. There won't be any quiet negotiations during the winter. They will wait for the players to weaken and accept whatever they present in June. It would be the same old owner play book.

I think the minute the season is called the players de-certify and take it to court. A big gamble but the players have a decent chance to improve their lot through the courts. The owners risk would be high. Even if they win in court they would now replace Fehr with the players individual agents to deal with. Parise and Suter's contracts could make them look like paupers compared to what some players will get. Marginal teams will be forced to relocate or fold. There will be no cap and on and on.

The smart move is to make a deal soon.

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Jay Harrison's take on the CBA negotiation

CANESNOW - Chip Alexander

"I still expect to play hockey. There's still too much to be lost," he said. "I'll believe that to the day it's not."

x

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been listening to xm and hearing a lot of players live and replays of the owners. (gag order is back on the owners)

either both sides are thick as bricks, or both sides are lying a heck of a lot.

they both say "we've given back", etc. everyone is "surprised". really? listening to all these guys (all involved) just sound like a bunch of whiners. it is hard to believe we pay everyone's salary. why do we subject ourselves to supporting these whiners? i've got to go to rehab and give this garbage up. detox.

Edited by BrokenSeason

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Are NHL players ready to roll over?- Bruce Dowbiggin (Globe and Mail)

Despite the NHLPA’s bravado, the NHL believes that a lot of the players (and some agents) are wavering and might just take what they offered earlier this week.
They want the players to regret the hiring of Don Fehr as their executive director with every fibre of their beings. For the NHL’s purposes, this won’t go to the judge’s cards. It wants a KO only.

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I really can't see the 30-40% of players who went through the last lockout that are still in the league allowing this to happen again with the deal having made it this far.

The deal in 2005 wasn't even close to being this close at this time. This would be moronic to let this go at this point.

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How stupid are these players to keep believing Fehr? He'll lead them right off a cliff if it will save his (censored) in the media spotlight.

SIGN THE DEAL AND LET'S PLAY SOME HOCKEY!!!

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I hope yesterday's theatrics were the lockouts death thrashing. Give a few days to cool off then get back to it. Don't listen to what Bettman or Fehr say, its all part of the "game" to them. Make whole is probably still on the table, and the players still have room to move. The owners can't be trusted in what they say because they don't get questioned by the media. Oh you want 5 year contract limits... so those 15 year contracts you were handing out... yeaaaaahahhh....

Also this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lP24tFBZufs&feature=player_embedded#!

Edited by Ichigo-1

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I'm guessing that when the Fehrs have a yard sale, nothing gets sold.

it goes like this:

- announce a yard sale to your neighbors for july, but don't really have it until december

- when patrons arrive, go back in your house for a glass of water. this takes 1/2 hour

- patrons would like to buy the toaster for 60% of don's listed price. don says "how about you come inside and buy my diswasher?"

- patrons object

- don gives them 3 other choices of appliances in the kitchen to buy

- patrons object, and suggest they talk with his wife

- wife talks, tries to make a deal on a few things

- don comes back, and tells all the neighbors he has greatest deals ever

- patrons object, they say they were trying to buy a toaster, but somehow got a toaster oven instead. patrons say we are not talking the same language.

- patrons leave, roll down windows on their car as they go out and yell at all the neighbors telling them don won't work with them

Edited by BrokenSeason

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If your pro-management or anti-union your going to side with the owners or at least side with their point of view. If your pro-union or workers rights (like me) your going to side with the players or at least side with their point of view. Its immaterial because this isn't about us (the fan) anymore. Both sides have to be careful not to make us want to lose interest when they come back but other than that it isn't about us.

There was no reason for the owners to walk away from the negotiations unless they were either never intending to sign a deal or were looking to alienate Fehr from his players. A last ditch divide and conquer tactic.

Fehr is arrogant, egotistical and a slick negotiator. Bettman is arrogant, egotistical and a slick negotiator. Its easy to dislike both of them.

end game IMO

Owners - 1) best deal possible 2)weaken the union 3) force out Fehr

Players - 1) best deal possible 2) establish a strong union 4) maintain strong leadership

Unless the owners are going to recognize that this NHLPA isn't the same group as 04 and negotiate with Fehr and unless both sides aret willing to make at least one more concession we won't have a season. But we still have time to save some of the season if cooler heads prevail on both sides.

That is my take on it. I have been fooled to many time now hoping a deal was imminent. Not anymore. I believe a deal when the ink is on the paper.

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If this goes on much longer, there will be a lot of losers. I have no doubt at least two and possibly up to 6 teams will fold or relocate, the Canes being one of them. In which case, the vindictive side of me wants to whole league to fold and start over. Would serve the owners right to lose their investment and the players right to lose their jobs. I am not anti-union, I believe they have their place, but can go too far. I think the NHLPA went too far when they hired Fehr.

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If this goes on much longer, there will be a lot of losers. I have no doubt at least two and possibly up to 6 teams will fold or relocate, the Canes being one of them. In which case, the vindictive side of me wants to whole league to fold and start over. Would serve the owners right to lose their investment and the players right to lose their jobs. I am not anti-union, I believe they have their place, but can go too far. I think the NHLPA went too far when they hired Fehr.

Maybe they went to far when they hired Fehr but it was inevitable after the last lockout when the players felt they were beaten and beaten down. as it turned out they did pretty good under the old CBA but that is not the driving force behind this fight. I could be wrong but this is a classic management/union fight. I agree if this goes to desertification nobody wins. Lets hope reason overtakes emotion.

x

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I'm still trying to get my head around why the players would risk sinking the season with their Wednesday night counter-proposal. Sounds like after agreeing to "Make Whole" and 50/50 they pushed back on THE ISSUE of player contract terms for years and $$$ variance. I think the CBA duration was a lesser issue. If I'm wrong, or about what I'm saying below, someone please help me understand. With contract terms and $$$ the sides say:

NHL: New rule - 5 year max term and no year > 5% of previous year. Example Yr 1 @ $1M, Yr 2 @ $1.05...etc.

NHLPA: New Rule - 8 year max term. For only 7 or 8 yr deals lowest year no < 25% of highest year.

NHLPA Example: If term is 7 or 8 yrs Highest year: $4M, lowest year =< $1M. Else anything goes.

Based on the above (please correct me if the above is incorrect!)

1. Why is the variability so important to the players?

2. Wouldn't the Owner's pitch be better for hockey? It avoids front or back loading of highest year and smooths the payout for ALL TEAMS and avoids cap manipulation. Doesn't that benefit the players, too?

3. If you're a new UFA, wouldn't you simply want e.g., $60MM (say, Jordan Staal) and care far less about either approach?

4. Doesn't the flatter owner approach lead to more parity and really benefit the 2nd and 3rd (even 4th) line players if the entire roster has a flatter payout curve given the league Cap?

5. Does the NHLPA approach simply benefit the star players who command 5 year deals and higher payouts by manipulating the Min/Max. Think of most players signing 1-3 year deals today. Only 90 or so players have 5+ year deals is my understanding.

6. Wouldn't small market teams benefit from the shorter term and less variability in $$$ when competing for UFA? It would be all about 5 years and max $$$ within 5%, but the Cap is a real deterent for teams that spend freely.

7. Lastly, wouldn't a growing sport and Cap pull all contracts higher where all players benefit under a smoother structure?

Would love to hear from all, whether pro-union, pro-owner, or just pro-sanity, to understand why the players would sink a season on this issue when they had a deal for the 50/50, Make Whole and new Pension Plan within grasp. I'm really focused on #3 above and wondering why would/should the players remotely care so much that they'd scuttle a season.

Edited by Manwolf

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The variance allows for teams to be flexible in structuring contracts. While at the extreme, it allows contracts that are intended to circumvent the cap, it also allows teams to juggle the salaries each year, while allowing players to receive bigger salaries and still have the security of longer term contracts.

For example, a team has 14M to spend on two players:

1) an established 28 yo veteran

2) an 22 yo upcoming star

These two are both very important to the franchise, and they want to sign them to the max 7 year contracts the owners have proposed.

If you figure the veteran will decrease in "value" as he ages, and the youngster will increase in "value" as he ages, you might want to structure their contracts like this:

Vet:

10M (at 28)

9M

7M

7M

7M

5M

4M (at 34)

Young star:

4M (at 22)

5M

7M

7M

7M

9M

10M (at 28)

These would be allowed by the players proposal, but would not be allowed by the 5% variance. To comply with that, it would have to be structured more like:

Vet:

7.75 (at 28)

7.50

7.25

7.00

6.75

6.50

6.25 (at 34)

Youngster:

6.25 (at 22)

6.50

6.75

7.00

7.25

7.50

7.75 (at 28)

While the totals for each player ends up being the same by the end, even this simplistic example shows some differences from a player's point of view. The vet will not be able to get as much money up front, where it could be invested. And the youngster will leave the contract at a lower level, which will serve as the "starting point" when discussing his next contract.

A more complex example would have the two contracts starting one year apart. Lets say the youngster's contract ends a year before the vet. With the 5% variance rule, the team will have 2.25M less to be able to put into the youngster's next contract.

Basically, there will be less "wiggle room" to work everyone into contracts the team can afford. Of course, the ones who take the brunt of it aren't likely to be the two players in the examples I have used. The 2.25 less to work with probably won't come from the young star's salary, but will likely mean that the "middle" players on the team will make less that year. Or may have been signed to a shorter contract that would expire to make room for the additional salary needed that year.

And that seems to be the concern. When the teams lose the wiggle room the bigger variances allow, they will likely try to regain that flexibility by:

- reducing the mid-value players salaries

- reducing the lengths of contracts, especially for lower tier players

I know I rambled a bit, but perhaps that helps a little?

For another discussion: http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=5098

Although it discusses contracts that are more extreme, the jist of it is that the stars will be forced to take all their money "up front", which will leave less for the non-stars. The assumption being that the vet will not sign the contract in my example, but will sign something more like a 5 year deal with a flat salary of 9M per year, which will leave less for everyone else overall.

Edited by InvisibleCane

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I'm still trying to get my head around why the players would risk sinking the season with their Wednesday night counter-proposal. Sounds like after agreeing to "Make Whole" and 50/50 they pushed back on THE ISSUE of player contract terms for years and $ variance. I think the CBA duration was a lesser issue. If I'm wrong, or about what I'm saying below, someone please help me understand. With contract terms and $ the sides say:

NHL: New rule - 5 year max term and no year > 5% of previous year. Example Yr 1 @ $1M, Yr 2 @ $1.05...etc.

NHLPA: New Rule - 8 year max term. For only 7 or 8 yr deals lowest year no < 25% of highest year.

NHLPA Example: If term is 7 or 8 yrs Highest year: $4M, lowest year =< $1M. Else anything goes.

Based on the above (please correct me if the above is incorrect!)

1. Why is the variability so important to the players?

2. Wouldn't the Owner's pitch be better for hockey? It avoids front or back loading of highest year and smooths the payout for ALL TEAMS and avoids cap manipulation. Doesn't that benefit the players, too?

3. If you're a new UFA, wouldn't you simply want e.g., $60MM (say, Jordan Staal) and care far less about either approach?

4. Doesn't the flatter owner approach lead to more parity and really benefit the 2nd and 3rd (even 4th) line players if the entire roster has a flatter payout curve given the league Cap?

5. Does the NHLPA approach simply benefit the star players who command 5 year deals and higher payouts by manipulating the Min/Max. Think of most players signing 1-3 year deals today. Only 90 or so players have 5+ year deals is my understanding.

6. Wouldn't small market teams benefit from the shorter term and less variability in $ when competing for UFA? It would be all about 5 years and max $ within 5%, but the Cap is a real deterent for teams that spend freely.

7. Lastly, wouldn't a growing sport and Cap pull all contracts higher where all players benefit under a smoother structure?

Would love to hear from all, whether pro-union, pro-owner, or just pro-sanity, to understand why the players would sink a season on this issue when they had a deal for the 50/50, Make Whole and new Pension Plan within grasp. I'm really focused on #3 above and wondering why would/should the players remotely care so much that they'd scuttle a season.

Turn it around Why would the owners risk sinking the season with only a few issues left to work out and tell players bringing Fehr back could be a deal killer. From what I'm reading the players couldn't figure out what happened and why such a bad reaction by the owners. As I said before it is my belief the owners never intended to sign this deal. Their game was to divide the union membership.

I don't think anyone can say your wrong. We just see some things differently. None of us know and we are just guessing and speculating.

From what I'm reading the player objection to a 5 year contract and was the 2nd tier player or journeyman player salary would suffer. The stars would still get their money but in a shorter term leaving less money for other players. So its not about the kid or Ov but about the Jay Harrisons and Chad LaRose type players of the league. The majority of players fall into this category.

Your other questions someone else will need to answer.

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This seems to be like trying to buy a gift with a small child. You have a general idea what will make the child happy without breaking the bank. On the first isle the child finds the most important toy, the on the second isle a most important toy appears, and so on throughout the store. After repeated attempts to narrow down the most important, the parent talks the child into settling on one or just takes the child home empty handed. My guess that Bettman had enough of the 5 year old theatrics and rather than devolving into a knock down drag out fight, took his puck and left. If the 5 year olds can't make up their minds about what is really important, how are the owners supposed to know? Maybe if the players hear "NO" periodically they will stop being brats.

Edited by winger52

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Of course everything you really want is the most important, until you get it. Then you move to the next thing on the list. Just like 50/50 was the most important thing to the owners, until they got it. Now contract length is the "hill we will die on", and a 10 year CBA (also new to negotiations) is an absolute necessity. (Note that the initial proposals were 5 years from the owners, and 4 from the players. The players went to 5, and the owners then needed 6. So the players last proposal (8) was a compromise between the owners last two proposals (6 and 10).

Each side is trying to get the best deal they can, and once they are satisfied they have everything they can get for one item they move to the next. It is a negotiation. At least, it is supposed to be. Of course, that also illustrates why negotiation is probably not the best path to follow with a 5 year old. ;)

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Of course everything you really want is the most important, until you get it. Then you move to the next thing on the list. Just like 50/50 was the most important thing to the owners, until they got it. Now contract length is the "hill we will die on", and a 10 year CBA (also new to negotiations) is an absolute necessity. (Note that the initial proposals were 5 years from the owners, and 4 from the players. The players went to 5, and the owners then needed 6. So the players last proposal (8) was a compromise between the owners last two proposals (6 and 10).

Each side is trying to get the best deal they can, and once they are satisfied they have everything they can get for one item they move to the next. It is a negotiation. At least, it is supposed to be. Of course, that also illustrates why negotiation is probably not the best path to follow with a 5 year old. ;)

Excellent post! Most people are so firmly entrenched on the owners side, mainly because of the Fehr Factor. I despise the man too, but that doesn't make the owners angels. They have presented a moving target too. It's pretty plain to me that Fehr was trying to get a little more for the players ( which is his job) when maybe he should have taken the deal. It's also pretty plain to me that Bettman wants to put the players and Fehr in their place and drive a wedge in the union. That seems to be more important than getting a deal done.

Bettman didn't have to pull the offer. He could have simply said no to the unions counter and said that the leagues current offer stood and publicly requested a full vote. What choice would Fehr have had other than to put it to a vote? If he didn't, then the owners win the public over.

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...Although it discusses contracts that are more extreme, the jist of it is that the stars will be forced to take all their money "up front", which will leave less for the non-stars. The assumption being that the vet will not sign the contract in my example, but will sign something more like a 5 year deal with a flat salary of 9M per year, which will leave less for everyone else overall.

Your post seems to confirm my understanding is accurate about their respective positions. Thanks, since I really wasn't certain I understood them.

Your comment above is what has me concerned, since I suspected the impact you're describing and IMO it hasn't been good for parity and small market teams (ok, I'm biased being a Canes fan). I don't see it leaving less for the non-stars, but in fact creating a smoother overall term that benefits those players.

I agree the vet wouldn't sign the contract, because the owner wouldn't offer those 5 long years. I'm thinking Whitney and how the extra year led him to Phoenix. I know his deal was 3 vs 2, but just using that example. My point being it works, but based on what player has left in the tank. You'd only sign him if he really had 5 years in that tank. IMO those forces lead to parity for GMs and not manipulation of $$$ and years that forgive slopiness (Scott Gomez).

Thanks for the input and link!

Edited by Manwolf

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Turn it around Why would the owners risk sinking the season ...I don't think anyone can say your wrong. We just see some things differently. None of us know and we are just guessing and speculating.

1. I think the owner position on term and increase/min/max is best for the problem everyone says they'd like fixed to protect a 30 team league and player jobs (back/front loaded contracts).

2. I'm not sure what we're seeing differently since I'm simply asking questions. I'm genuinely puzzled that the players countered the offer. IMO the owners seem to want a deal and are said to be losing money.

Thanks for the perspective.

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... It's also pretty plain to me that Bettman wants to put the players and Fehr in their place and drive a wedge in the union. That seems to be more important than getting a deal done....

Respect your opinion, but I don't think the owners would let that trump getting a partial season in. Maybe I'm naive, but I really believe the offer the owners made on 50/50 and Make Whole was a payment to get the contracting issue that fixes parity and back/front loaded contracts. It wasn't to be pocketed and then Business as Usual (mostly). IMO the owner's proposal on time and contract $$$ helps the small market teams, which the players seem to want in order to preserve roster spots on 30 squads.

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