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Halpern: “At some point, labor unions have to make a stand”

Aug 31, 2012, 1:45 PM EDT

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Jeff Halpern Getty Images

Jeff Halpern has already made the majority of the money he’ll make in his NHL career. The 36-year-old is set to earn $700,000 next season with the New York Rangers. Only two years ago, he was coming off a four-year, $8 million deal.

But despite his veteran status, Halpern’s still looking out for the young guys as the owners and NHLPA attempt to negotiate a new CBA.

“It’s more than [revenue] percentages on the line,” Halpern told CSNWashington.com. “It’s setting the table for players down the road. We’re trying to find something that works without completely giving in. At some point, labor unions have to make a stand and that’s where we are right now.”

Halpern points out that the current CBA negotiations aren’t like the last ones that resulted in the cancellation of the 2004-05 season and, ultimately, the introduction of a salary cap.

“We had a system before the [2004-05] lockout that was pretty advantageous to the players and we gave up pretty much everything that we stood for,” Halpern said. “Before that we had an open market system.

“We went into a salary cap system that the league wanted and the union isn’t arguing anymore. The major fights and disagreements from the last CBA are gone. Now it’s arguing over who gets how much of the pie, basically, and defining exactly how much that revenue is.”

Related: First step: actually define hockey-related revenue

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