We are now 11 days until an official NHL Lockout.
After the jump, the bad news...
I wish I could write this long, elaborate post on why the NHL won't have a lockout but I can't. It seems that no matter how good (or bad) talks go, Gary Bettman and the NHL owners are pushing for this lockout. Why? No fucking idea.
Late Friday afternoon, while I was dick deep in Locust blood and empty Gnasher shells, the NHL and the NHLPA ended their negotiation talks. NHL.com wrote:
Talks between the NHL and NHLPA aimed at negotiating a new CBA stalled Friday when the Union declared that it was unwilling to discuss the reset of current player compensation that the League considers essential for a new agreement.
There are no further bargaining sessions scheduled at this point, but both sides said Friday they would be willing to resume the negotiations at any point.
Awesome. JUST. FUCKING. AWESOME. I'm a little hesitant to believe NHL.com on anything they writes these days because, ya know, it's the NHL's own website. That would be like an oil company, I don't know lets go with BP, spilling millions of gallons of oil in the Gulf and their website just writing "Everything's Fine". So lets look at some place else, shall we?
NHL labor negotiations hit a standstill after talks broke off on Friday, two weeks before the league has threatened to lock out its players.Awesome. I'll be honest with you guys, I don't even know where to begin with this shit anymore. The NHL sent the PA a new proposal last week that changed their original revenue sharing proposal. The original proposal was going to have the players collect 43% of all revenue (which is a drastic change from 57% they were currently receiving [that the owners agreed too!]). The newest proposal now has the players receiving 46% share over a six year CBA.
NHL Players' Association executive director Don Fehr announced that the NHL asked that talks be "recessed" after the union presented its latest proposal during negotiations held at the league's headquarters in New York.
Fehr said the union's latest proposal "did not bear fruit."
Obviously the players aren't going to take a 10% cut in their revenue, so anything that's not 50/50 is probably going to be rejected.
More from the SI.com piece:
I just don't think Gary Bettman and the owners get it. Last year the NHL recorded a revenue of $3.1 BILLION dollars. That's the largest amount of revenue the league has ever reported and yet the owners still want to cut the legs out from beneath the players. I don't know anything from these talks, but based on what I've heard, the players would be willing to take lesser pay but the NHL also wants to take away salary arbitration and lengthen the amount of time before a player can hit free agency.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said he doesn't see a need to continue negotiations until new ideas can be brought to the table.
"Someone needs to say something new," Bettman said.
This is not the turn in negotiations the commissioner was hoping for, especially after the NHL altered its proposal this week.
"What I thought was a promising week ended with disappointment," Bettman said."
Owners are claiming that they are struggling to make a profit. From our homies at Puck Daddy:
Admittedly, the optics aren't good for Minnesota Wild owner Craig Leipold. In April, he told the Star Tribune that his team wasn't turning a profit, and put the onus on player salaries:So please excuse me when I don't feel bad for an owner who cries about being poor then spends almost $200M on two players. Its hypocrisy at it's finest. That's not to say that the owners are the only ones to blame. In the end, both sides are to blame.
"We're not making money, and that's one reason we need to fix our system. We need to fix how much we're spending right now. [The Wild's] revenues are fine. We're down a little bit in attendance, but we're up in sponsorships, we're up in TV revenue. And so the revenue that we're generating is not the issue as much as our expenses. And [the Wild's] biggest expense by far is player salaries."
Three months later, Leipold authorized his general manager to sign Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to contracts totaling $196 million — including $50 million in signing bonuses in the first three years of the contracts.
The only real people who lose from a lockout are the fans and the people who work at the arena. The players can collect unemployment or they have other leagues that will pay them for their services and the owners have other business ventures other than a hockey team. Neither side is going to lose a huge chunk of change over a long standing lockout. Unlike the parking attendants, vendors, security and whoever else works these NHL games that won't be working for months, both the NHL and the NHLPA can collect a paycheck from someone else.
I'm getting away from the real crux of this whole thing. Both sides seem to be far apart on what they consider a "fair" CBA. I'll leave you to stew in these Gary Bettman comments:
"Somehow there's an entitlement to be at 57 percent," Bettman said Wednesday of the current collective bargain revenue percentage that's allotted to the players. "There is no such entitlement."UPDATE: As I posted this, Jimmy Murphy tweeted this out:
Just spoke to three NHL players and growing feeling that NHL has 'Black Friday' game between BOS/NYR 11/23 "circled" as first game.— Jimmy Murphy (@MurphysLaw74) September 4, 2012