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 NHL Labor Talks 
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Post NHL Labor Talks
ESPN wrote:
Labor talks to resume Wednesday
Updated: July 17, 2012, 2:09 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- The NHL and the NHL Players' Association are set to resume labor talks on Wednesday at the league offices in New York.

Total revenue of the league's operations is the biggest sticking point right now, and it's an important one. The players like their cut right now. The owners don't.

The two sides met last Friday in another round of negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement before the current one expires on Sept. 15.

There were multiple reports coming out of the last round of talks that the owners' offer included players' hockey-related revenues get slashed from 57 percent to 46 percent. It also was reported that players would be forced to wait 10 years before becoming unrestricted free agents and that contracts would be limited to five years -- a major change considering Zach Parise and fellow blue-chip free agent Ryan Suter decided to sign matching 13-year, $98 million contracts with the Minnesota Wild.

NHLPA Executive Director Donald Fehr and NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly are among those meeting Wednesday. The two sides have regularly met since opening talks June 29 in a bid to reach a new collective bargaining agreement.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said after Friday's session, "We've got a lot of work to do in a relatively short period of time."

Fehr said he didn't know what kind of short timeframe Bettman was talking about.

"The optimum would be to get a deal done as soon as you could," Fehr said.

Fehr said he viewed a strike as a "last resort."

"What a last resort means is you bargain in good faith, you do everything you can, you listen carefully to what the other side says, you make counter proposals when you can, where you believe it's consistent with the kind of contract you believe is appropriate, and you keep at it until you get an agreement," he said. "Hopefully the other side shares that."

Bettman oversaw the 1994-95 NHL lockout that delayed the start of the season and forced a 48-game regular-season schedule. When labor problems lingered in 2004-05, Bettman shut down the league. It took years for the NHL to recover from the lost season.

Fehr is very protective of the players' prerogatives under the National Labor Relations Act. He believes players are effectively 50-50 partners with owners over anything that affects their work rules, such as realignment, which stalled last season after the players' association refused to agree to the changes.

The NHL regular season is slated to start on Oct. 11.


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press

http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/81740 ... abor-talks
As with most of these negotiations, this has the chance to get ugly and quick. Any thoughts / guesses on what's going to happen? I've already heard someone say they think it will be a shortened season starting after the first of the year..... ](*,)

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July 17th, 2012, 2:39 pm
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I don't like the 5 year contract limitation, but 8-10 years may be more appropriate. I agree with reducing the revenue sharing. The players earn their contract salary, the business earns the profit, period. This crap of "you pay hundreds of millions of dollars to own a team that could go bankrupt, and give us 50% of your profit" is ridiculous. One thing is for sure though, Hockey can't handle another lockout.

And, unlike professional football, or even baseball, I don't think professional hockey works with replacement players.


July 17th, 2012, 2:52 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
wjb21ndtown wrote:
I don't like the 5 year contract limitation, but 8-10 years may be more appropriate. I agree with reducing the revenue sharing. The players earn their contract salary, the business earns the profit, period. This crap of "you pay hundreds of millions of dollars to own a team that could go bankrupt, and give us 50% of your profit" is ridiculous. One thing is for sure though, Hockey can't handle another lockout.

And, unlike professional football, or even baseball, I don't think professional hockey works with replacement players.
Agreed. And the 10-years until unrestricted FA is ridiculous IMO

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July 17th, 2012, 3:07 pm
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TheRealWags wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
I don't like the 5 year contract limitation, but 8-10 years may be more appropriate. I agree with reducing the revenue sharing. The players earn their contract salary, the business earns the profit, period. This crap of "you pay hundreds of millions of dollars to own a team that could go bankrupt, and give us 50% of your profit" is ridiculous. One thing is for sure though, Hockey can't handle another lockout.

And, unlike professional football, or even baseball, I don't think professional hockey works with replacement players.
Agreed. And the 10-years until unrestricted FA is ridiculous IMO


I kind of agree with that, but it depends on how its worded... is it 10 years from the draft, or 10 years in the league? I think it should be 5-7 years in the league of full playing time. A lot of these guys are drafted at 18-19 and don't make the league for 3-4 more years, or longer.

Also, if a player has to wait 10 years to be a UFA, they're signing their second deal more or less mandated that they stay with the same team? That seems a little crazy to me, if it is in fact that it's 10 years after they're brought up to the league. I understand that RFA system usually works with your 2nd deal being with the same team that drafted you, but 10 years seems nuts to me. I mean, you could be past your prime by the time you're signing your first real deal.


July 17th, 2012, 3:19 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
ESPN wrote:
NHLPA makes first proposal
Updated: August 14, 2012, 10:03 PM ET
Associated Press

TORONTO -- The National Hockey League Players' Association has made its first proposal in the latest round of collective bargaining talks with the NHL.

The union said its proposal to the league includes a smaller percentage of revenues for players and an expanded revenue sharing program to help struggling teams.

Donald Fehr, the executive director of the NHL Players' Association, said the proposal could "stabilize the industry."

Fehr said players are set to surrender as much as $465 million in revenue under the proposal if the league continues to grow at an average rate. He says that number could balloon to $800 million if the league grows at the same rate it has over the last two seasons.

"We do believe that the proposal the players made today, once implemented, can produce a stable industry ... that can give us a chance to move beyond the recurring labor strife that has plagued the NHL the last two decades," Fehr said.

Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby, Washington's Alex Ovechkin, Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos and Ottawa's Jason Spezza were among 23 players that participated in the meeting Tuesday in Toronto.

"I like it a lot," Crosby said of the proposal. "I think, as Don said, it's addressing the issues that the league has. (We're) making sure as players that we do our part to help those (struggling) teams out, but also holding the teams accountable.

"At the end of the day, it's going to take both (sides) to do that."

An NHL proposal last month called for a significant decrease for players in revenue share by introducing new contract restrictions, including a five-year cap on deals. The NHLPA has proposed a three-year deal for a CBA with an option for a fourth, Fehr said.

The proposal would have the players accepting a lower percentage of the revenues over the first three years. The fourth year would see the CBA revert to its current terms.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday he has received the union's proposal and hopes to continue talks Wednesday.

"Our hope is we can take care of business in the next month," Bettman said. "That's our goal."

Bettman said the owners would carefully consider the latest proposal.

"It's clear to me that they didn't put it together in an hour or two, and as a result we're going to need to take a little bit of time to evaluate it, understand it," Bettman said. "If we're going to respond, we want to respond appropriately."

The current deal expires Sept. 15.

"Everything that we've done has been well thought out," Spezza said. "There's a reason behind our proposal. The biggest reason is because we want to try to find a way to play and find a way to reach a fair agreement."

Fehr has said the players are willing to work past Sept. 15 if an agreement hasn't been signed, as long as one is on the horizon. Bettman has already said the NHL is prepared to lock out its players if no deal is reached by then. Negotiations have been under way for seven weeks. The regular season is slated to begin on Oct. 11.

Fehr said the proposal, "should lead to a new CBA."

"Players did not believe the owner's initial proposal was appropriate," he said.

Both sides acknowledged negotiations are firm and constructive.

"In essence, when you boil it all down, what we're suggesting is that the players partner with the financially stronger owners to stabilize the industry," Fehr said, "and assist the less financially strong ownership groups."

The NHL has had two seasons disrupted by labor disputes over the past two decades. In addition to the cancellation of the 2004-05 season, almost half of the 1994-95 season was wiped out by a labor dispute. Training camps are scheduled to start on Sept. 16, one day after the current CBA ends.

"The players want a new CBA," Fehr said. "And they want it soon."


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press

http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/82680 ... sal-owners

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August 16th, 2012, 1:53 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
ESPN wrote:
League, players far apart
Updated: August 15, 2012, 7:41 PM ET
Associated Press

TORONTO -- The wide gap that existed in labor talks between the NHL and NHL Players' Association was hardly bridged on Wednesday, a day after the union presented its counterproposal and with the threat of a lockout now only a month away.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said the two sides are "still apart, far apart," and "not on the same page," in making his first public comments since having a chance to read through the NHLPA's offer. Adding that he was "a little disappointed" that the union has yet to present its full proposal, Bettman said the league isn't even at the point of making a counteroffer.

"I think there are still a number of issues where we're looking at the world differently," Bettman said, after the two sides met for about an hour at the NHLPA headquarters in Toronto. "So there's still a wide gap between us, and not much time to go."

NHLPA executive director Don Fehr described the gap between the two sides as "a pretty substantial monetary gulf." But he placed the blame on the NHL for creating the gap in the first place with the cutbacks in salary and limitations placed on free agency the league made in its initial offer last month.

The current collective bargaining agreement expires on Sept. 15, and the NHL has already warned that it will lock out its players if a new deal is not reached by then. The NHL regular season is set to open Oct. 11.

Bettman's response to the NHLPA's proposal and the large gap that remains between the two sides is regarded as a significant setback. That considerably raises fears that the NHL could be headed for its fourth labor dispute in 20 years. That's a timeframe that includes the 2004-05 season which was wiped out entirely by a lockout. It also dates to April 1, 1992, when a 10-day players' strike led to 30 games being postponed and rescheduled.

Bettman was pleased that the union, in its proposal, stuck to the framework of a cap system and acknowledged the league has economic issues that need to be addressed. The problem was the union didn't entirely satisfy those concerns from the owners' perspective.

"What the issues are and how they get solved and how deep the issues go is something we're not yet on the same page," Bettman said.

Fehr disagreed by saying the union made significant concessions and addressed the league's concerns.

The trouble was, he said, the union's proposal wasn't what the NHL asked for.

"It's not a circumstance in which the players are just going to say, 'OK, take everything from us,'" Fehr said. "That's basically what it was: 'You had a 24 percent reduction last time, so let's have another one.' That was their proposal. That's what created the gulf."

Under the league's proposal, Fehr said, players' salaries would be scaled back to the level they were before the previous lockout.

Fehr also disagreed with Bettman's suggestion that the union has not presented its full proposal. He said the NHL has "almost everything" except for certain player contract issues that are tied to economics. He said the union is considering addressing those issues next week.

Though talks on a sub-committee level are scheduled to continue, Bettman and Fehr won't return to the table until next week. Fehr is leaving negotiations to meet with players in both Chicago and Kelowna, British Columbia, to update them on talks.

Fehr did say he will stay in touch with Bettman by phone.

The union's counterproposal stood in stark contrast to what the NHL made in its initial proposal a month earlier.

The NHLPA proposed a deal in which players would give up as much $465 million in revenue if the league's overall revenue continues to grow at an average rate over the first three years of the deal. Fehr indicated that number could balloon to $800 million if the league grows at the same rate it has over the past two seasons.

Players would then have the option in the fourth year to revert to the current system, in which they receive between 54 and 57 percent of league revenues.

The union also proposed that the NHL commit money to a revenue-sharing system to help struggling teams.

Fehr described the players' offer as one that could stabilize the industry.

The NHL's initial proposal placed much of the burden on its players. The league is seeking another 24 percent cut in player revenue and the introduction severe limits to free agency. That includes players waiting 10 years to be eligible to become unrestricted free agents, as opposed to seven in the current deal, and eliminating players' rights to salary arbitration.

Bettman noted that players in other major sports, such as the NFL and the NBA, agreed to reduce their revenue share in new deals that have been struck over the past year.

Fehr said it's unfair to make those comparisons. And he questioned why Bettman didn't mention Major League Baseball, which has revenue sharing among teams, doesn't have a cap system and has enjoyed labor peace.


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press

http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/82719 ... abor-talks
Looks like we get to look forward to yet another lockout. :finger: Bettman

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August 16th, 2012, 1:59 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
ESPN wrote:
Bobby Orr sides with players
Updated: August 11, 2012, 2:10 PM ET
By James Murphy | ESPNBoston.com

Boston Bruins legend Bobby Orr voiced his displeasure with NHL owners, who've said they'll lock out the players if a new collective bargaining agreement isn't reached by the Sept. 15 deadline.

"If we go back to the last collective bargaining agreement, the talk after that was, 'Gee, the players really got beat on this one,'" the Hall of Famer said Friday of the previous CBA, which came after a lockout canceled the 2004-05 season.

"So all of the sudden the owners have come back -- I know they're negotiating, they're posturing and so on, but what they put out there, there's no way the players can accept something like that," Orr, who serves as a player agent and runs his own agency, told CBC News in Moncton, New Brunswick, where he's attending the Chevrolet Safe and Fun Hockey Festival.

The NHL enjoyed record-breaking revenue and increased television ratings last season, but many teams are still claiming losses and say they can't survive under the current system, in which the players net 57 percent of hockey-related revenue. The owners want the players to reduce their share to 43 percent, and Orr doesn't see how that is equitable.

"Players want their fair share, and that's what it's all about and I think it's very unfair if fans -- until they understand and see everything what's out there -- that they suggest that the players are being greedy," he said.

http://espn.go.com/boston/nhl/story/_/i ... ute-owners
Seems to me that if these teams are having problems making money, then there are too many teams or the owners just can't seem to handle their finances. Perhaps its finally time for some contraction...still don't know why there's a team here in AZ ](*,)

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August 16th, 2012, 2:04 pm
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I don't see why they should get any profit sharing at all. Seems silly to me. They're already making millions. Seems like gouging to me.

I don't see how Orr has anything to do with this... What did he make? $27k a year, if he was lucky?


August 16th, 2012, 3:30 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
wjb21ndtown wrote:
I don't see how Orr has anything to do with this... What did he make? $27k a year, if he was lucky?


All I saw when I looked it up was "Speculation that he made 25-40K". Find that a very large range but who knows. It's very disappointing that things are looking like another lockout, I mean you started to finally get it going in the right direction again. I was very pleased with TV air time this past season and if there is another lockout then who knows what will happen with NBC.

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August 16th, 2012, 4:49 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
Lions2SB2 wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
I don't see how Orr has anything to do with this... What did he make? $27k a year, if he was lucky?


All I saw when I looked it up was "Speculation that he made 25-40K". Find that a very large range but who knows. It's very disappointing that things are looking like another lockout, I mean you started to finally get it going in the right direction again. I was very pleased with TV air time this past season and if there is another lockout then who knows what will happen with NBC.


Thats the same thing with the past lockout. TV ratings were at an all time high. I cant imagine why anyone would think a lockout would be good for either side...

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August 16th, 2012, 4:52 pm
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Phuckin unions


August 16th, 2012, 6:03 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
Bettman is ruining the NHL just like that dingleberry Stern has ruined the NBA.

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August 16th, 2012, 9:02 pm
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
conversion02 wrote:
Bettman is ruining the NHL just like that dingleberry Stern has ruined the NBA.


That would be a great argument IMO, who ruined there respective sports more, I would love to see that one! :lol:

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August 17th, 2012, 12:58 am
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
conversion02 wrote:
Bettman is ruining the NHL just like that dingleberry Stern has ruined the NBA.
Not surprising. I heard the other day that Bettman looks up to Stern..and just found out that they worked together for ~12 years :shock:

Quote:
Host Bob Costas asked Stern whether he talked to Bettman during the NBA lockout this fall for any advice. Stern said, “I think it's fair to say that we talk to each other regularly and have a wide-ranging discussion about relevant topics.” When the topic came up concerning HBO's Bryant Gumbel calling Stern a “modern plantation overseer” during the lockout, Bettman said, “Let me answer that first, because I worked with David for 12 years. That is probably the most ignorant, stupid statement I've ever heard, okay? Anybody who knows David knows that nothing could be further from the truth.” Stern said to Bettman, “Thank you, dear friend Gary.” Stern added, “I actually enjoyed it to a degree because the flood of phone calls that I got from a very diverse community said, ‘What is this guy's problem,’ and I said, ‘His ratings are going down, it's a slow news day, he wants some headlines.’" Bettman declined to comment on Stern’s handling of the Chris Paul trade from the league-owned Hornets after Costas wondered whether Bettman would ever stop a trade involving the Coyotes, which is controlled by the league. Bettman said of Coyotes GM Don Maloney, “We give him a budget, and as long as he stays within the budget, he makes the hockey decisions. The league approves all trades in terms of cap compliance and making sure we have the terms, but we don't get involved in the hockey decisions at all."

http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Dail ... Stern.aspx
Tweedle dee & tweedle dum ](*,)

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August 17th, 2012, 9:35 am
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Post Re: NHL Labor Talks
It appears as though the NHL does, in fact, want to lose all the momentum they've gained the past 6 years.. ](*,)
Freep wrote:
Q & A: Details on the NHL lockout
11:28 AM, September 16, 2012

USA TODAY hockey columnist Kevin Allen breaks down the key questions in the lockout, the third during NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman's 19-year tenure:

What is the major issue?

How revenue, which last season totaled $3.3 billion, will be divided. Players are guaranteed a 57% share of the revenue, and the owners want to see the players' share dramatically reduced.

How far apart are they?

There is a wide gap, both in philosophy and dollars.

The owners' last offer was a straightforward six-year deal that would reduce players' share from 49% to 47% over the course of the deal. The players are offering a three-year deal in which they would accept less of a share of anticipated future growth. Their latest offer tacked on the possibility of extending it by two years.

According to players, their share of the revenue would be reduced from 54.3% to 52.3% over the course of their offer. Players want that money to be used to fund additional revenue sharing for financially stressed teams.

Owners dispute their numbers because they are tied to an anticipated growth of 7.1%, the average for the past seven years.

Will does the lockout mean?

Players can't use team facilities and won't be paid. Training camps won't open until a new collective bargaining agreement is reached.

However, under lockout rules, any injured player will be paid until he's cleared by the team doctors. That would cover players such as the New York Rangers' Marian Gaborik, Edmonton Oilers' Taylor Hall and Philadelphia Flyers' Chris Pronger.

Will the Oct. 11 start of the season definitely be delayed?

Probably, but it's possible to reach a deal by Oct. 1 and start on time if training camps were reduced to seven to 10 days. Given the fact players train year-round, this is possible.

Will players begin signing with European teams?

It's possible that some Europeans will start playing right away, but most players will wait a few weeks to see what happens before they start heading overseas.

Other issues: The Swedish Elite League isn't going to allow its teams to sign NHL players unless they commit for the season.

The Kontinental Hockey League has placed restrictions on which NHL players would be eligible to sign there.

The Russia-based KHL is the European league that comes closest to paying NHL-style wages. Players can get up to 65% of their NHL pay.

How would this lockout be different from the season-canceling 2004-05 one?

The last time the owners and players negotiated, the main issue was the systemic change from a free market season to a salary cap.

Coming into the lockout, both sides were preparing as if the season could be lost.

There is no such undercurrent this time. This fight is clearly about money.

What are the pressure points that will bring the sides together?

Players would normally start drawing checks Oct. 15, and their checks are significant. The average NHL salary is $2.4 million.

In addition to losing revenue, owners would not want to lose the Winter Classic outdoor game Jan. 1. This is a major event for the league, and this year it will be played at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, where it's likely to draw a hockey-record crowd of more than 115,000.

http://www.freep.com/article/20120916/S ... ed%20Wings

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September 17th, 2012, 11:46 am
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