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Winnik says labor pessimism is thanks to the owners

Aug 18, 2012, 12:00 PM EDT

Daniel Winnik Getty Images

One of the players involved directly in labor talks is Ducks forward Daniel Winnik. He recently spoke on NiteCap with Josh Rimer on nextsportstar.com about how things are going and he and the other players are upbeat about getting a deal done without a lockout.

“I think there’s a lot more that happens behind closed doors that a lot of the players don’t see who aren’t involved in the negotiations,” Winnik said.

“From the guys that I’ve talked with, there isn’t any panic. Everyone’s unified. They understand it’s a process and there’s still a good amount of time here to get a deal done.”

While the players may be positive, fans aren’t nearly as pleased with how things are going and Winnik says he has an idea where the negativity comes from: NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.

“I think people understood our deal and seeing what we’re trying to do in order to grow the game and willing to work with the bigger markets to help the smaller teams out. The pessimism comes from Gary’s comments [Wednesday]. I think that’s where the discouragement of people might’ve come.”

You might argue the players’ are trying to keep things positive while the owners are dealing in negativity, but the only thing for sure right now is the players are winning the PR battle. That much won’t matter if the league locks out the players on September 15.

  1. bleed4philly - Aug 18, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    In a recession, the owners always get the upper hand, players have a better chance when the economy is strong.

    • jaredphi - Aug 20, 2012 at 1:46 PM

      I think it depends on how you look at it.

      If there is a lockout, the owners lose major revenue.

      After all, what other activities (concerts, Disney on Ice, etc.) will they slot into all the hockey game times at their respective stadiums? It seems to me they’d be the big losers with regards to a year of revenue.

      After all, many of the NHL players could always leave for the KHL or the various European hockey leagues for one season…at least recouping SOME of the revenue they’d lose from an NHL lockout for a year.

  2. icelovinbrotha215 - Aug 18, 2012 at 12:15 PM

    What else is he going to say ha? The PA is holding up the process? The NHL and PA better not take advantage of the success they have recaptured since the last lockout. I’m hoping for no repeat.

    • polegojim - Aug 18, 2012 at 9:54 PM

      Exactly! Same here, get it done and bring on the hockey.

  3. bcsteele - Aug 18, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    Glad to hear more may be getting done behind closed doors. Didn’t need to hear that Bettman is still being negative because I don’t recall a time during this whole process that he has been.

    Another thought: The owners want to roll back player salaries and set contract limitations. I believe players should have the option to opt out of their current contract. Because I don’t believe its fair for people like Hossa, Kovi, Crosby, Ovi, and many others but most recently Stall, Weber, Suter, and Parise…would they have signed their “mega deals” just to watch them get rolled back by the kind of amount we’re talking? Who knows how the market would have turned out this summer if they knew this was going to take place to this degree. You can argue all day whether they make to much money but it’s still very shady to me that the owners can entice them so much money just to roll it back.

  4. dbarnes79 - Aug 18, 2012 at 1:42 PM

    I’m with the players this time around. Last time I thought a cap was needed in the NHL so I sided with the owners. But now the owners are complaining about their own deal. They seem to be the greedy ones this time. Get a deal done for the fans!!!

  5. manchestermiracle - Aug 18, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    Anyone else feel that spine shiver when Winnick mentioned there is “still a good amount of time here to get a deal done?” I’ve heard that line in every negotiation in every sport that ended in a lockout. There’s always plenty of time to get a deal done and then there isn’t.

  6. tealwithit - Aug 20, 2012 at 1:50 AM

    Of course the players are winning the PR battle. The other side isn’t allowed to speak, while the players are lighting up Twitter with all this “We just want to play” bs. You just want to play? Then take an even split of the revenue and go play. That’s where this is going anyways… Why drag it out and sacrifice games?

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