Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

-Vintage Canuck-

*Official* CBA Negotiations and Lockout Thread

6,228 posts in this topic

Minny is no different. Management said with the Parise and Suter signings that their fans were getting fed up with losing. That city already lost a franchise to Dallas.

The reality of business is that mistakes have to be corrected and the status quo doesn't cut it. When players are the biggest expense they are natural targets for cost cutting. The right or wrong of it means nothing.

Another issue ignored by most is 'lost opportunity cost' associated with under performing franchises. Specifically the value of capital tied up in a franchise. Even at a 5% ROI the average team requires a profit of $7.5 million, after tax, to make that kind of return on a team worth $150 million. Not happening.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mediator talking with NHL, NHLPA; no CBA sessions planned

The NHL and the union got back to work Friday, just not with each other yet.

Both sides had plans to meet separately with U.S. federal mediator Scot Beckenbaugh in the morning but hadn't set up a time to return to bargaining in an effort to save the season.

The lockout is in its 111th day. The sides have one week to reach a deal on a collective bargaining agreement that would allow for a 48-game season, the minimum the NHL has said it will play.

Commissioner Gary Bettman set a Jan. 11 deadline for a deal so the season can begin eight days later. Reports Friday morning suggest Bettman would cancel the season Jan. 10 if a deal isn’t in place or imminent.

Representatives from the league and the union met twice Thursday for small meetings, one dealing with the pension plan, but never got together for a full bargaining session.

A long night of talks Wednesday that stretched into the early morning hours didn't end well and likely kept the sides apart most of the day Thursday. No new full-scale negotiations took place, and outside of a few relatively brief, small sessions on specific topics, it was basically a lost day.

The sides can't afford many more days like that.

All games through Jan. 14, along with the all-star game, have been cancelled, claiming more than 50 per cent of the original schedule.

Player vote

On Thursday, players began voting to restore their executive board's authority to dissolve the union, less than a day after letting a self-imposed deadline pass to declare a "disclaimer of interest.”

A 48-hour period for the NHLPA's membership to cast ballots opened at 6 p.m. ET on Thursday, according to a source.

The first vote, held over five days last month, passed overwhelmingly. Should at least two-thirds of players return a positive vote again and the NHLPA decide to notify the league it is disclaiming, it would open the door for players to file antitrust lawsuits.

A good stretch of bargaining this week has produced some progress toward ending the labour dispute, including an apparent agreement between the sides to allow each team up to two compliance buyouts prior to the 2013-14 season. Those would allow teams to terminate player contracts without being penalized against the salary cap, although the buyout amounts would count against the players' overall share in revenue.

"That is quite the concession from players … proof that NHL was going to hold firm on money being 'outside the system.'" Elliotte Friedman of Hockey Night in Canada tweeted Thursday morning.

The sides had also discussed a 20 per cent yearly salary variance in contracts, an improvement from the NHL's previous demand of 10 per cent.

However, the salary cap range for the 2013-14 season — the first full one under the new CBA — remained a significant hurdle, according to sources. The union is seeking a $65-million US cap and a $44-million floor while the league has proposed an upper limit of $60 million and a lower limit of $44 million.

The sides have traded four proposals in the past week — two by each side — but none has gained enough traction. Getting an agreement on a pension plan would likely go a long way toward an agreement that would put hockey back on the ice.

Major point of contention

Fehr believed a plan for players-funded pension was established before talks blew up in early December. That apparently wasn't the case, or the NHL has changed its offer regarding the pension in exchange for agreeing to other things the union wanted.

The salary-cap number for the second year of the deal — the 2013-14 season — hasn't been agreed to, and it is another major point of contention. The league is pushing for a $60 million cap, while the union wants it to be $65 million with a floor of $44 million.

In return for the higher cap number players would be willing to forgo a cap on escrow.

Both sides seem content on the deal lasting for 10 years, but they have different opinions on whether an opt-out should be allowed to be exercised after seven years or eight.

The NHL proposed last Thursday that pension contributions come out of the players' share of revenues, and $50 million of the league's make-whole payment of $300 million will be allocated and set aside to fund potential underfunded liabilities of the plan at the end of the collective bargaining agreement.

Last month, the NHL agreed to raise its make-whole offer of deferred payments from $211 million to $300 million as part of a proposed package that required the union to agree on three nonnegotiable points. Instead, the union accepted the raise in funds, but then made counterproposals on the issues the league stated had no wiggle room.

"As you might expect, the differences between us relate to the core economic issues which don't involve the share," Fehr said of hockey-related revenue, which likely will be split 50-50.

The NHL is the only North American professional sports league to cancel a season because of a labour dispute, losing the 2004-05 campaign to a lockout. A 48-game season was played in 1995 after a lockout stretched into January.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Didn't see it but might well have missed it, and it is Larry Brooks but may well have some truth to it:

Gary Bettman infuriated players across the table from him at NHL headquarters on Thursday — and, by extension, NHLPA membership — by claiming that a number of general managers had told him they regret some of the contracts they’d previously handed out and would welcome the opportunity to “dismantle” their teams in order to meet the steep drop to the league’s proposed $60 million cap for 2013-14, sources have told The Post.

The players responded with a mixture of anger and skepticism, demanding to know the identity of these alleged GM’s. Bettman refused to name the straw men in seeking to counter the players’ position that adopting a $60M cap — even with two amnesty buyouts — would be punitive against big-market, big-spending franchises.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bettman angers players, slows talks by saying some GMs would like to 'dismantle' teams

Gary Bettman infuriated players across the table from him at NHL headquarters on Thursday — and, by extension, NHLPA membership — by claiming that a number of general managers had told him they regret some of the contracts they’d previously handed out and would welcome the opportunity to “dismantle” their teams in order to meet the steep drop to the league’s proposed $60 million cap for 2013-14, sources have told The Post.

The players responded with a mixture of anger and skepticism, demanding to know the identity of these alleged GM’s. Bettman refused to name the straw men in seeking to counter the players’ position that adopting a $60M cap — even with two amnesty buyouts — would be punitive against big-market, big-spending franchises.

The incident, which the PA interpreted as an indication of the Canceler-in-Chief's lack of respect for the athletes, serves as an example of why negotiations between the NHL and union broke down on Thursday after having taken previous baby-steps toward resolving Owners’ Lockout III.

The union believes the league’s stance changed after PA executive director Don Fehr decided against filing a disclaimer of interest at Wednesday’s midnight deadline that would have sent the dispute into court. The PA believes the NHL pulled a bait and switch in the immediate aftermath of Fehr’s continued commitment to the collective bargaining process.

The NHL, we’re told, attempted a late change in the language regarding penalties for clubs caught hiding Hockey Related Revenue (HRR) through audits by the NHLPA.

The previous CBA, and previous proposals, stipulated that clubs in violation of HRR-reporting requirements would be fined $1M plus the loss of one first-round draft pick for a first offense, with a second offense carrying a fine of $5M plus three first-round picks.

The NHL on Thursday attempted to change that so that Bettman himself would decide all the penalties. The league withdrew the changes when the PA objected.

And in one that is all but impossible to believe but has been confirmed by several sources, the NHL also has proposed that it be allowed to re-open the CBA if an arbitrator confirms an NHLPA audit that the league is hiding a substantial amount of HRR, with the amount pegged at 2-percent.

It is as unclear whether that proposal remains on the table as it is whether it is meant to be taken seriously, Rest assured, however, the players took it very seriously, adding to their perception that the NHL had pulled a bait-and-switch on them once the disclaimer deadline passed.

The union has responded by authorizing yet another vote to empower Fehr to disclaim.

The PA and NHL are meeting separately with a federal mediator Friday morning. It is possible that bargaining between the parties will resume this afternoon, the league having established a Jan. 11 deadline for reaching an agreement to save the 2013-14 season.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I am at the point for the first time where I believe that the season will be cancelled now. There simply isn't enough time to polish off an agreement before next week and the NHL's season deadline. I believe that deadline or within a couple of days of it is really true. They will not go into February.

From my experience (and I have a reasonable amount in labour relations), I am not seeing the signs that an agreement is imminent.

My reasons:

1. With the latest league trickery trying to change things after the last DOI (disclaimer of interest) expired it has blown up any amount of trust that might have been building up. What that means is that you simply can't do an "agreement in principle" and call the players back to start prepping for a season and having training camp. You will need a final. voted on, signed off full agreement with every bit of language before you can start. Fehr would be stupid to start that process because it is impossible to turn back the momentum once guys start getting ready. You would be guaranteed based on history that Bettman would start throwing in little details that make the agreement worse if the players had started working.

2. The NHL has repeatedly moved the bar back on several issues when the PA has gotten closer to them in and order for an agreement NOT to be reached. They originally only wanted a 6 year CBA, and when the union moved towards them, they suddenly said that it had to be 10 years minimum and that was "A hill they would die on" (they moved that goalpost because they realized what a great deal they were getting and would love to be locked into it for 10 years).

3. There has been no movement from the league to start allowing the players to have some small "wins" in order to save face at the end of the negotiation. This almost always happens when you are close to a deal, you start moving from hardcore bargaining short term thinking to long term relationship thinking. Bettman is so focused on discrediting Fehr and not giving him credit, that he is unwilling to allow him to save any face. Both sides need to feel like they had some wins in order to move forward.

4. If they really believed that they were close, both sides would be making conciliatory statements about the other side for the same reasons as above. You need to work with these people going forward, and the last thing the league needs is the players to be bad mouthing the NHL in front of cameras once games start while wearing PA ball caps. They need to feel the NHL has moved towards them at the very end in order not to be really bitter.

The only chance this thing has is that a couple major market owners start a small insurrection within the league and push to get a deal done. That would have to be done this weekend. They have won on almost every front so if they gave the players everything left on the table it would still be a massive victory in negotiations. The differences they are talking about now are less than a week's profits for the entire league.

I don't see this coming from the players' side because Bettman has been pretty good at increasing their solidarity by repeatedly screwing them. Fehr has been great at leveraging this anger. It is no coincidence that the players were amped up just before they were voting a second time on decertification by that HRR redefinition play that the league tried. Fehr is using Bettman's actions against him to rile up his constituency.

(Bettman and Hobbes cartoon)

http://ca.sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/bettman-hobbes-tale-mischievous-commissioner-imaginary-friend-132653078--nhl.html

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You beat me to it! :lol:

Seriously, though, I can absolutely see how (if true) that would have pissed off the players.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Players have made sacrifices for the health of the league. Last CBA they accepted a salary cap and on top of that took a rollback on their legally signed contracts that was significantly bigger than the percentage owners have ever revenue shared. (That CBA, by the way, was the first time owners ever agreed to share anything and then they made the rules so ridiculous that most teams losing money didn't even qualify. Some who at least had a chance to qualify were forced to do things like buy their own tickets just to meet the rules. Phoenix, however, was given an exemption from the rules other teams had to follow once the NHL bought them.)

Even with the tiny increase owners are agreeing to in revenue sharing, the amount players have already agreed to lower their share this time is more than what owners are willing to share with money losing teams. So, in reality, players are the ones funding team revenue sharing. It was the players' who asked for it to be increased and the rules relaxed so it would apply to more teams to begin with. And even still, the NHL's team revenue sharing is pathetic compared to all other major sports leagues in North America.

That is exactly the problem. Owners want to buy their teams rather than doing the leg work to scout and develop them. But that will never work. A few big names does not make a winning team, and they won't even increase fan support if there aren't any fans around who recognize their names. Just like for the players, nothing will replace doing the hard work.

What are you talking about? Players have been saying they would drop their share since the beginning and agreed to drop to 50/50 months ago. Players gave up money last time. Players are agreeing to give up money this time because even though the NHL is saying they will be "made whole" they won't. They'll lose millions to escrow that will go back into the pockets of owners.

On the other hand, owners are stalling negotiations to demand contractual limitations on players that even they admit will not effect their bottom line by so much as a penny. If they care about the health of the league why are they unnecessarily damaging their relationship with the players, fans and sponsors alike? Why aren't they the ones who seem the most concerned with getting back into business?

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

just had an epiphany not sure if im right or not, but for year2 with the cap at 60million, but you are allowed to buy/trade 10%still with a trade with another team? effectively making the cap 66million or did that clause go out the window?

that could be the reason the league is stuck on 60million as they dont want the cap to be over 70million with the trade allotment

if anyone knows if that trading of capspace is still on the table would be great.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...

The bottom line is this:

The have owners need to share more revenue.

The players need to take less of the pie.

The term of player contract has to have limits to end cap circumvent once and for all.

So yes, the players have to give again. But if they want there to be 700 jobs out there instead of 230 (or less) they have to.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris Phillips rips NHL for “dirty tricks”:

Chris Phillips is blaming the NHL’s “dirty tricks” on the current state of negotiations between the league and NHLPA.

Phillips, the Senators’ player rep, is specifically upset with what he believes was an attempt by the NHL to sneak past changes to the part of the CBA that covers the reporting (or misreporting, as the case may be) of hockey-related revenue.

“Basically, they changed the definition, where there would be no accountability in terms of HRR accounting,” Phillips told the Ottawa Sun Friday. “So they could basically give us whatever number they wanted to.

“It’s great that we’re at 50-50 now, but 50-50 of what? That’s just ridiculous. We’re trying to get a deal done, and negotiate in good faith and they pull garbage like that. That’s not going to get anything done.”

The NHL denied any wrongdoing, and the issue has since been resolved. But clearly the players are still angry.

Frankly, if this latest dust-up weren’t so sad, it would be downright hilarious. Think about it: we’ve gotten to the point where the players are accusing the owners of duplicity on the issue of punishing owners for being duplicitous.

Couldn’t make it up.

http://prohockeytalk.nbcsports.com/2013/01/04/phillips-rips-nhl-for-dirty-tricks/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

‏@ElliottPap

D.Sedin on maybe going home to play if season axed: "We're going to talk to Markus (Naslund) in the next few days. You have to be prepared."

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem is the player salaries are driven by the have teams. Yes the players gave in the last CBA but where are the salaries now? Higher than before the last CBA. So half the teams are losing money again. The bulk of the league revenue increase has come from the richest four teams. As a result the cap has hit what only a handful of teams could afford the last time around and not many more can afford it now.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Watching that TSN vid, players are unhappy with NHL's 'sneaky move', they want to disclaim.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Real_ESPNLeBrun

Mediator about to meet with NHL now

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@RenLavoieRDS

NHLPA conditions for the next CBA to be 10 year. 1-option out after 7 years. 2-minimum salary at $800 000 at year 9. Still no deal on that.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.