The events from last night’s CBA negotiations were the equivalent of “Rookie Olympics” in college where we were told to put our heads on baseball bats, spin, shotgun a beer, sprint to another bat, do it again, then sprint back and tag in our next relay partner – there was lots of spin happening, and a realistic potential for puke.
For most of us non-lawyers – which is to say a huge, huge, majority of the people – we’re left without a clue of what to think. Hockey fans are being used as children would be in a messy divorce (leverage!), and being told by mommy that daddy doesn’t love us while hearing the same from the other side. I don’t really know what the fuck to believe anymore, and we’re all unfairly caught in the middle.
Representing Joe Average Guy who’s keeping an extremely close eye on the CBA negotiations (and consider, that’s probably exactly how must NHLers are, plus a little a more information), some thoughts on what’s happening between the NHL and NHLPA right now: Read the rest of this entry »
At some point, if a deal is getting done you have to get the lawyers involved. The principles are going to need to be in the room before things can come to a close. That’s why when we heard this news this morning, we didn’t necessarily consider it a bad thing:
Owners-players only format has been terminated. PA insists the room is open for ongoing negotiations. Not surprised.
Last night the players and owners were embroiled in the thick of CBA negotiations until early Thursday morning. No agreement was reached, and we’re told no agreement is imminent, but things did move in the right direction despite the tensions. Despite what we’re “told,” people are still hopeful.
Both sides exchanged CBA proposals yesterday, making it a monumental day en route to actually getting a deal done, with the players offering theirs up first, and the owner’s making the last move of the day. The day was highlighted by frequent separations into personal caucuses and re-meetings by the two sides, prompting one of the more informed reporters, Chris Johnston, to get the hashtag “LockoutYoyo” going (another Twitter trend – the damn NHL podium – I’ll get to in a bit).
The nuts and bolts of the owner’s offer:
* They would put $300 million towards the “make whole” agreement ($250M to players, $50M to pension fund). The players had asked for $393M, the owners had previously proposed $211M. So y’know…getting closer here, kids.
* The owner’s proposal was for a 10 year CBA (with an opt-out after 8) – here’s to hoping that part takes, I’m not doing this again in five.
* The league would leave unrestricted free agency and arbitration as is, which is a concession compared to their previous offers. Of course, it’s not actually a concession given that they’re just proposing to leave things as-is.
* The one area the owners were unwilling to budge: they really want contract lengths maxed out at five years (with no more than a 5% increase or decrease in pay year-to-year on all deals), but would be able to sign their own players for up to seven. Apparently this bothers the players. …And now, a little rant: Read the rest of this entry »
* Nick Kypreos reported on Sportsnet today that he thinks there could be hockey very soon, to which Doug Maclean added his prediction of the 20th.
* Kypreos also reports that he’s heard of coaches calling players and telling them to “be ready.” Innnteresting.
* Kypreos thinks guys need a week or so to get to town, Maclean says two days. With a camp that would need to be “7-9 days” in length for safety purposes (you just can’t throw guys who haven’t been playing together with those who have), you’re looking at hockey somewhere just before/around Christmas if this gets wrapped up this week.
Big “if,” of course.
* McKenzie notes where things are currently at:
Negotiations between NHL-NHLPA are at such sensitive stage NHL govs weren’t even given specifics from yesterday’s session at today’s BofG.
* Gary Bettman’s presser was, um, we’ll call it “brief.” Under 70 words:
“Good afternoon everyone. With so many of you here I just wanted to stop by. We just completed a two hour board of governors meeting which was basically an update. We are pleased with the process that is ongoing. Out of respect for that process I don’t have anything else to say and I’m not going to take any questions. And … We’ll see you later. Thank you.”
Six owners and 18 players got together yesterday without the likes of Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr for some #realtalk last night, homie. The idea was originally suggested by Gary Bettman, hoping that removing the lead representatives and actually putting those groups in the same room without middle men would allow for a sticky situation to get un-stuck.
Remarkably – despite much skepticism on my part - it seems as though real progress was actually made. According to Frank Seravelli of the Philadelphia Daily News, the two sides met for eight hours yesterday into the early morning.
The players were represented by Michael Cammalleri, Sidney Crosby, B.J. Crombeen, Craig Adams, David Backes, Mathieu Darche, Martin St. Louis, Jonathan Toews, Shane Doan, Ron Hainsey, Shawn Horcoff, Jamal Mayers, Manny Malhotra, Andy McDonald, Ryan Miller, George Parros, Brad Richards, and Kevin Westgarth, while the owners were represented by Jeremy Jacobs (Boston Bruins), Ronald Burkle (Pittsburgh Penguins), Mark Chipman (Winnipeg Jets), Jeffery Vinik (Tampa Bay Lightning), Murray Edwards (Calgary Flames) and Larry Tanenbaum (Toronto Maple Leafs).
The success of the talks were highlighted by a joint(!) press conference given by Steve Fehr and Bill Daly at around 2 a.m.