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CBA Negotiations: We are getting close to the edge of darkness, yet we are not scared


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#51 The Napkin


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 01:26 PM

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
Sense is the NHL believes todays proposal from the NHLPA was better than what was expected.No details on proposal yet. #CBA #TSN

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
First impression of NHLPA proposal was that it was not a 'counter attack' in response to the League's July 13th proposal. #TSN

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
Second impression was that it possessed economic elements that were 'interesting' to the League. #TSN


And yeah, I was encouraged by that as well. We shall see what tomorrow brings...

#52 cshea


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 02:06 PM

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=403068

Essentially, the players offered to keep everything the same, except they're willing to reduce their take of HRR.

Bettman's comments seemed particularly encouraging.

#53 PedroSpecialK


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 02:19 PM

This is at once surprising and very encouraging. However, I'd have to believe Fehr won't budge much after this proposal - the players probably (correctly) realized that a 5 year ELC is much more damaging than any minuscule reduction in HRR. Similarly, I'd imagine Fehr stuck with the old HRR definition, not the league's proposed one that reduced the amount of revenue criteria that could be considered "hockey-related".

#54 cshea


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 02:30 PM

More from Wardo, or atleast how I interpreted it:

The players essentially offered to cut their HRR for 3 years, without, or atleast with a vastly reduced, salary cap escalator. Then the players would hold an option for the 4th year where they could play a year under the current CBA (57%). So basically instead of the owners funneling additional revenue into player salaries with the cap rising each year, the owners would get to keep that money for 3 years. Then the 4th, the players get the option of increasing their HRR.

Edited by cshea, 14 August 2012 - 02:31 PM.


#55 FL4WL3SS


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 03:45 PM

Essentially the owners wanted the players to come down on their share of the revenue, came out with an insulting offer and the players realized the game the owners were playing and decided to be the adults in the conversation.

There's motivation behind the players giving up some revenue, whether we see that motivation realized in these negotiations or the next set of negotiations is to be seen.

EDIT: Also, great work with the updates cshea.

Edited by FL4WL3SS, 14 August 2012 - 03:45 PM.


#56 Kenny F'ing Powers


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 04:02 PM

Wow...2 months ago I was positive we'd miss some/all of the season. This is a step in the right direction.

#57 cshea


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 05:40 PM

https://twitter.com/aaronward_nhl

In NHLPA proposal,the artificial slowing of salary growth by players will go as follows: year 1 will increase by 2%,year 2 by 4% and


in year 3 by 6%.If Revenue growth exceeds 10%,anything over 10% is subject to 57% that exists under present system #NHLPA #NHL#TSN


Important to remember average revenue growth is 7.1% so this is a three year payroll reduction of $465M to help teams in need. #TSN


On the surface, this looks like a pretty reasonable deal the players have proposed. At the very least, Fehr and the players have won the PR battle.

Edited by cshea, 14 August 2012 - 05:42 PM.


#58 Nomar813


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 08:51 PM

Very encouraging news. Particularly with the way baseball season is going, a lengthy wait for hockey season would be agony. The owners got a good honest counteroffer. Now they'll need to be more willing to compromise than their NBA counterparts.

#59 FL4WL3SS


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 08:07 AM

Lets see if the owners get greedy and try to squeeze some more money out of the players. Personally, I think the owners should have signed on the dotted line as soon as this was proposed - the players did exactly as the owners wanted and gave up some revenue. If they come back and try to get greedy, I can see the players pulling their offer and digging their feet in the ground.

#60 cshea


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 08:39 AM

Lets see if the owners get greedy and try to squeeze some more money out of the players. Personally, I think the owners should have signed on the dotted line as soon as this was proposed - the players did exactly as the owners wanted and gave up some revenue. If they come back and try to get greedy, I can see the players pulling their offer and digging their feet in the ground.


I don't think they'll get too greedy. Bettman's comments make it seem as though the league was pretty receptive to what the players presented. We'll see what both parties say following today's meetings. Two issues I see cropping up:

1. Revenue sharing. The players proposal includes some sort of revenue sharing plan that Fehr described as the players partnering up with the big maket teams to help the teams in trouble. Obviously teams like Toronto, New York, Montreal, Boston, Philly, etc. won't accept this without some sort of fight.

2. That 4th year PA option. If the league continues to grow at it's current rate, reverting back to 57% means the owners would be losing out on a lot of money. Of course, the idea is the owners make up the difference and then some in the first 3 years when the players stay at a fixed cost, but I don't see the owners willing to give up that cash so easily.

Overall, it seems to me like the players simply want to get back on the ice. I was initially scared of Fehr, but he's a guy who just acts on behalf of his constituents. In this case, they players seem pretty genuine in their desire to get on the ice and play hockey. Hopefully the owners realize this and they come to the table willing to bargain with the players.


#61 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 12:34 PM

This proposal is fascinating. What it signals to me is that Fehr is not a one-and-done hired gun for the NHLPA; he's planning to be around for at least one more negotiation and to groom a successor.

Revenue sharing is obviously good for the game as we can't move all the down on their luck teams to willing and ready Canadian markets. It also gives the players more options on where to play and helps shore up parity. The big market teams might not like it, but there's going to be 20 teams who need the money versus 10 who don't. That feeds into the next strategy...

...I think Fehr is setting up the next negotiation to be about the hard cap. I don't think the idea of a cap is going anywhere (I think once that arrives, it's there to stay) but Fehr might push for some exemptions like Bird rights, or a luxury tax, or something like that. Something that allows the big market teams to spend the money they already have that puts some more money in the revenue sharing pot and/or doesn't distort the game. He's going to attract them to his side by playing on their grumpiness over revenue sharing, and they're going to gang up on the smaller teams and demand something back for all the welfare checks they're getting.

#62 cshea


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 12:48 PM

Yeah, Fehr is definitely laying the groundwork towards eventually knocking down the cap. Fehr made it clear yesterday that this current proposal still included a hard cap, but that there were a few circumstances where it could exceeded. According to Aaron Ward, the proposal allows for teams in dire circumstances to trade/sell up to $4mm in cap space. Seems to me like this is the first step towards a luxury tax.

Edit: Another tidbit from Ward today: Apparently a team in distress could be given an extra draft pick. The league and PA would have to mutually agree on dishing it out, but apparently the idea is that giving an extra draft pick to a team in need would help revitalize the struggling market. Seems nice in theory, but I don't know how it would work in practice.

Edited by cshea, 15 August 2012 - 12:55 PM.


#63 cshea


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 01:18 PM

I found this article to be a pretty comprehensive look at what the PA's plan means to the negotiations. It's worth a read.

http://www.sportsnet...posal/?site=www

#64 MiracleOfO2704


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 02:14 PM

Not finding a link yet on their website, but TSN is reporting that Bettman's view is that the two sides are still far apart. As soon as it's linked, it'll be here.

#65 Greg29fan


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Posted 15 August 2012 - 02:37 PM

Bettman sez no so fast my friends:

Michael Grange‏@michaelgrange

Bettman also said he's disappointed that the #NHLPA hasn't responded to contractual issues #NHLPA #NHL

Michael Grange‏@michaelgrange

Most forthcoming Bettman has been - players proposal didn't respond to theirs & didn't acknowledge industry trends (paraphrase) #NHL #NHLPA

#66 MiracleOfO2704


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Posted 16 August 2012 - 07:11 AM

"There's still a wide gap between us with not much time to go," Bettman said Wednesday.

"I do think it's fair to say that the sides are still apart -- far apart -- and have different views of the world and the issues," he added.


http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=403156

See you in 2014.

To my point, it appears Bettman truly believes that he has full ability to crush the NHLPA again as he did with Goodenow. Fehr puts forth a decent negotiating response to Bettman's " F U NHLPA" plan, and because it wasn't a total submission, here's Bettman saying, "Out way or the highway, boys."

I can't believe I'm actually rooting for Donald Fehr on this one.


#67 cshea


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Posted 16 August 2012 - 07:30 AM

It's not really a surprise that the owners rejected the players proposal, they were never just going to sign off without countering. Of course Gary's going to say the owners don't like it. Now we know where each side stands, and they have a month (maybe 6 weeks if they can rush preseason) to find common ground.

I think Gary threatening a lockout publicly is a tactic designed to put pressure on the PA and, more importantly from our perspective, speed up the negotiations. The owners proposal came on 7/13, and it took the basically a month for the PA to respond. That's a lot of negotiating time wasted.

Edited by cshea, 16 August 2012 - 07:32 AM.


#68 LogansDad


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Posted 16 August 2012 - 08:44 AM

Say what you want about Bud Selig, but at least we aren't dealing with this shit every couple years in baseball.

#69 j44thor

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 11:10 AM

This talk of "trends" and revenue sharing are going to be rather moot once they engage in another lengthy lockout. NHLPA is going to have nearly all the public support so it will be interesting to see how this shakes out. This is going to get very ugly for the owners who appear to be more at odds with each other than the NHLPA.

#70 The Napkin


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Posted 21 August 2012 - 03:45 PM

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
Players expect to have clearer picture after tomorrow as to where both sides stand. #TSN #CBA #NHL




Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
NHLPA meeting today focused on non economic issues and player feedback on those issues.Fehr will meet with Bettman tomorrow.

#71 cshea


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Posted 22 August 2012 - 12:21 PM

According to Ward, today's meeting is about revenue sharing. Apparently, the current system has $140 million in revenue sharing. The owners proposal included a 4.5% bump to $190 million in RS. The PA countered with $240 million, of which $100 million goes directly into a fund created explicitly to bail out teams in trouble. Apparently the $100 million would come out of both the players and owners pockets. So, essentially, the players want to keep RS the same and then just create this bail out fund. My question would be what happens to the $100 million if it's not needed to bail a franchise out, but Ward didn't explain that.

Anyway on the surface, a $50 million gap in RS doesn't seem like too big of a gap to over come. we'll see what Fehr and Bettman say later on.

Edited by cshea, 22 August 2012 - 12:26 PM.


#72 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 22 August 2012 - 06:25 PM

I'm guessing they will say "we are still far apart."

#73 MiracleOfO2704


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Posted 23 August 2012 - 11:15 AM

I'm guessing they will say "we are still far apart."


And Jed has bingo

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=403677

In addition to that sundae, Aaron Ward has no faith in these two coming together on a deal before the lockout begins.
http://watch.tsn.ca/...5034#clip745034

On the plus side, there's this...

@markhmasters: Bettman can't understand why there's so much focus on revenue sharing; says gulf bt sides not wide on that issue


Edited by MiracleOfO2704, 23 August 2012 - 11:17 AM.


#74 cshea


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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:06 AM

Saw this earlier today.

https://twitter.com/DarrenDreger

Small group meeting in NYC on Tues. Bettman, Daly and the Fehr brothers. Eco issues the focus. NHL likely to present another proposal.


Hopefully this proposal moves things forward, but I doubt it.

#75 cshea


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 11:22 AM

According to Ward, Fehr and Bettman met for 45 minutes. Fehr left to go brief the the players, but apparently the plan is for the talks to resume later today. Fehr didn't give the media any info on his way out, however.

I want to believe this is a good thing.

#76 Spaulding Smails


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 11:45 AM

The fact that they at least plan to resume talks again today hopefully means the NHL didn't give another shit proposal. This seems like a move in the right direction.

#77 cshea


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 02:35 PM

Sadly, early reports aren't that encouraging. Apparently the league's proposal only included some minor tweaks, nothing substantially different.

The Fehr bros are back and in talking with Bettman and Daly now. They brought along the superstars for this meeting, Mathieu Darche, Doug Murray and Ron Hainsey. I'm assuming we'll get more "wide gap" quotes from both sides when they emerge from the meeting.

#78 The Napkin


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 03:17 PM

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
Fehr described NHL proposal as 'different in some respects from original proposal'. #TSN
According to Fehr, NHLPA to work on proposal tonight and tomorrow morning. Expect to meet NHL tomorrow afternoon. #TSN
Fehr says, 'it's a proposal we intend to respond to' #TSN
Fehr impression of proposal, ' don't feel better or worse about it' #TSN

Katie Strang@KatieStrangESPN
#CBA Essentially sounds like NHL submitted new or modified proposal. Fehr wants PA to take more time reviewing/gathering info b4 responding

#79 cshea


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 03:28 PM

And around and around we go.

At some point they need to just stop with the proposals. Both sides have made proposals and we know where they stand. Enough with the "proposal, review, and counter-proposal" cycle. They know where each other stands, these pointless small tweaks to the original, far apart, proposals aren't moving the process forward. they need to just get to the negotiating table and spend 10-12 hours a day trying to reach common ground.

Edit: Bettman talking now, and said they aren't far apart on revenue sharing. So that's a plus, I suppose. He also said that his proposal was "significant" and was intended to find common ground and move the process forward. Grain of salt applies to his comments, of course.

Edited by cshea, 28 August 2012 - 03:32 PM.


#80 The Napkin


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:02 PM

Yep. Just get in a room and talk and talk and talk. And then talk some more. There's no good reason why this can't get down.

#81 soxhop411


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:51 PM

Yep. Just get in a room and talk and talk and talk. And then talk some more. There's no good reason why this can't get down.



back we go again


Tim Panaccio@tpanotchCSN

union source: NHL moved some things around but it is "basically the same" proposal as before and won't fly


#82 TheRealness


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 06:06 PM

98.5 had them closer on revenue sharing, which seems to be the cause du jor in these negotiations. If they can figure that out, I suspect the rest of it is just finely handcrafted window dressing that takes entirely too fucking long to craft.

#83 cshea


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Posted 28 August 2012 - 09:15 PM

Info on the league's proposal is out. It's a 6-year deal, which eventually gets the league to a 50/50 split.

http://www.usatoday....ails/57385074/1

According to details provided to USA TODAY Sports, the plan calls for fixed dollars in the first three seasons that would put players share of revenue at 51.6% in 2012-13, 50.5% in 2013-14 and 49.6% in 2014-15. In the final three years, the players and owners would split revenue 50-50.


The NHL proposal calls for a fixed salary cap of $58 million next season and then caps of $60 million and $62 million. Under the plan, the league projected a fourth-year salary cap of $64.2 million, a fifth year at $67.6 million and the final season's cap of $71.1 million.


The NHL is not asking for any rollback in current contracts, suggesting that the adjustment could be made through changes in contracting practices, increases in league-wide revenue and contributions to player escrow.


The first proposal the league sent Fehr's way had them cutting the players take down to 43%, so getting them to go to 50/50 seems like a step in the right direction. Atleast this latest proposal isn't an outlandish a proposal as the first one, so I suppose that's a plus.

Now a few problems:

1. This includes a redefinition of HRR. Not sure what changed, but the league may very well have been willing to come to 50/50 on the HRR because they redefined some form of revenue in an attempt to keep that away from the players. The league could've just re-arraigned the deck chairs on the Titanic with the HRR redefinition.

2. No rollbacks is good, but I have no idea how the league plans on rolling the salary cap back by $10 million a week before training camp starts. The Bruins would suddenly be $12 million over the cap.

Edit: according to Renaud Lavoie of RDS the $51.6% of the redefined HRR for next year is equivalent to 46% under the current definition of HRR. So they came up ~3% (the initial proposal was 43% under the current definition) but I don't really see the players accepting anything close to that.

Edited by cshea, 28 August 2012 - 09:37 PM.


#84 Franklin Fanatic

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 08:37 AM

Info on the league's proposal is out. It's a 6-year deal, which eventually gets the league to a 50/50 split.

http://www.usatoday....ails/57385074/1






The first proposal the league sent Fehr's way had them cutting the players take down to 43%, so getting them to go to 50/50 seems like a step in the right direction. Atleast this latest proposal isn't an outlandish a proposal as the first one, so I suppose that's a plus.

Now a few problems:

1. This includes a redefinition of HRR. Not sure what changed, but the league may very well have been willing to come to 50/50 on the HRR because they redefined some form of revenue in an attempt to keep that away from the players. The league could've just re-arraigned the deck chairs on the Titanic with the HRR redefinition.

2. No rollbacks is good, but I have no idea how the league plans on rolling the salary cap back by $10 million a week before training camp starts. The Bruins would suddenly be $12 million over the cap.

Edit: according to Renaud Lavoie of RDS the $51.6% of the redefined HRR for next year is equivalent to 46% under the current definition of HRR. So they came up ~3% (the initial proposal was 43% under the current definition) but I don't really see the players accepting anything close to that.


Great post/recap. Thanks!

Edited by Franklin Fanatic, 29 August 2012 - 08:38 AM.


#85 TheStoryofYourRedRightAnkle

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 08:53 AM

Info on the league's proposal is out. It's a 6-year deal, which eventually gets the league to a 50/50 split.

http://www.usatoday....ails/57385074/1







The first proposal the league sent Fehr's way had them cutting the players take down to 43%, so getting them to go to 50/50 seems like a step in the right direction. Atleast this latest proposal isn't an outlandish a proposal as the first one, so I suppose that's a plus.

Now a few problems:

1. This includes a redefinition of HRR. Not sure what changed, but the league may very well have been willing to come to 50/50 on the HRR because they redefined some form of revenue in an attempt to keep that away from the players. The league could've just re-arraigned the deck chairs on the Titanic with the HRR redefinition.

2. No rollbacks is good, but I have no idea how the league plans on rolling the salary cap back by $10 million a week before training camp starts. The Bruins would suddenly be $12 million over the cap.

Edit: according to Renaud Lavoie of RDS the $51.6% of the redefined HRR for next year is equivalent to 46% under the current definition of HRR. So they came up ~3% (the initial proposal was 43% under the current definition) but I don't really see the players accepting anything close to that.


Presumably, existing contracts would be revalued for cap hit versus the new cap in some way. I would guess that whatever percentage of the current cap they are, they would be the same percentage under the new cap, regardless of actual contract size.

The original 43% offer was a flat figure for the proposed contract, no? So, they actually came up only 2% over the life of the proposed CBA since the proposed percentage actually goes down in the first three years (basically, 46% in year one, 45% in year 2, 44% in year three, and 45% for the remaining three years which averages to 45%. That overall number would change depending on how excluded revenues grow versus included revenues. If excluded revenues grow more than included, then the players' average percentage could actually be lower than 45%.

If I am doing this math right at all, of course.

#86 cshea


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Posted 29 August 2012 - 12:11 PM

Yeah, that seems to be about right. It's progress in the sense that the owners offered more money to the players, but the biggest issue is they two sides aren't talking the same language. It's pointless for them to be throwing around HRR percentages when they don't have an agreement on what HRR is. Step 1 should be to work out an agreement on what HRR is, and once that is in place, then you figure out how to split the money.

Anyway, talks are supposed to resume at 2pm today. The writers on twitter seem to be all over the map. Some think there is enough in the leagues proposal for the PA to work with and that tings are progressing, others preach doom and gloom. I lean towards the latter, given the history between Bettman and the PA, but we'll see what they have to say after the meetings.

#87 cshea


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Posted 29 August 2012 - 03:33 PM

Talks done for today, Fehr up first:

- He confirmed NHL's proposal went up from 43% to 46% Also a 6-year proposal, instead of the original 5.
- No rollbacks, instead the money would go into escrow.
- PA wants to crunch the numbers and look at revenue for individual teams instead of the league as a whole.
- Sources and structure of revenue sharing quite different.
- Fehr's preference is to keep the definition of HRR the same.
- PA working on a counter, they plan to present it tomorrow.

The escrow thing won't fly. The players are already pissed at the current escrow practice, so they won't want that at all. Financially, seems like they're working towards a 50/50 split of HRR under the current definition. It's just a matter of how stubborn both sides are. That said, it's pretty fucking stupid that they're still tossing percentages around without even an agreement on what HRR actually is.

#88 Curtis_Lesspanic

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:00 PM

No rollbacks is good, but I have no idea how the league plans on rolling the salary cap back by $10 million a week before training camp starts. The Bruins would suddenly be $12 million over the cap.


Correction. The B's would be $12 million over the cap with Lucic, Seguin, Marchand and Rask as pending RFA's and Horton and Ference as pending FAs.

Good thing the 4th line is locked up.

#89 cshea


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 08:20 AM

Seems like today will be an important day in the CBA negotiations. The PA will be presenting another counter proposal to the league today. If this doesn't start to bridge the gap, we may not have hockey for a while.

Expecting the worse, hoping for the best.

#90 cshea


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 02:37 PM

...and Fehr says talks are off.

Fuck.

Edit: the league asked for the talks to be recessed. Fehr claims he's willing to continue on, but I don't see this getting resolved. Fehr and Bettman have a combined 6 work stoppages under their belt.

Edited by cshea, 31 August 2012 - 02:44 PM.


#91 The Napkin


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 02:49 PM

can we take the 2 of them out and start over?
Fucking piss.

#92 cshea


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 02:58 PM

The finger pointing is unbelievable. Bettman says they're willing to talk whenever the Union is.

So now we wait. Yet again, these idiots are goin to fuck up a good thing.

#93 Titoschew

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 04:15 PM

Thanks for the yeoman's work, chsea. Even as disappointing as things seem to be trending.

#94 TheRealness


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 05:31 PM

Thanks for the yeoman's work, chsea. Even as disappointing as things seem to be trending.


Yeah, you deserve some serious credit for keeping us updated. Thanks.

I'm not as concerned yet. We're still two weeks away from 9/15 and both sides are still looking to curry favor with the fans, so they don't want to be the first ones to walk away. They're at an impasse now, and some hard decisions need to be made. I think the comments about asking for a recess are in part related to that impasse, but it's also Labor Day weekend. Now is a good time to reflect on what is important to you, like playing hockey, having hockey, and watching hockey.

They're still both at the table, or at least telling the media that. If we start getting reports through next Thursday that they still haven't talked, then my eyebrow may start twitching uncontrollably until I have hockey again. I don't think Hockey East Saturdays will be enough.

#95 The Napkin


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Posted 31 August 2012 - 09:18 PM

Aaron Ward@aaronward_nhl
Per Player sources, NHLPA new proposal focused on 4th year option in their offer, 3 options presented (Big Picture)-1)setting the 4th year players’ share number to an actual HRR. 2)options for EACH side to extend to a 4th year 3)resetting the agreement in the 4th year to a schedule that would tie the players’ share to revenues in the way it has been done under the current agreement (example-under this agreement,the players share started at 54% and moved up to 57% as revenues grew) important note,no actual numbers were discussed #TSN

#96 Blacken


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Posted 01 September 2012 - 12:31 AM

Aaron Ward is really killing it with this stuff. Almost like he's actually able to write complete sentences.

#97 kenneycb


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Posted 01 September 2012 - 01:09 AM

Fuck Scott Walker. Just because. And for obvious reasons.

#98 locknload

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 06:49 AM

Fuck Scott Walker. Just because. And for obvious reasons.


Years later his name still makes my blood boil.

#99 cshea


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Posted 02 September 2012 - 08:31 PM



Definite PA slant on this, but thought it was a cool video nonetheless.

Figure this out.

Edited by cshea, 02 September 2012 - 08:42 PM.


#100 Turrable

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 08:57 PM

The racist tweet interlude was...odd




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