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NHL exec Bill Daly discusses lockout, fan support and NHLPA

Sep 6, 2012, 11:00 AM EDT

Bill Daly and Gary Bettman Getty Images

Gary Bettman’s right-hand man Bill Daly caught up with Mike Russo for an extensive interview, covering the CBA negotiations in detail.

His first point is that the revenue sharing issue really isn’t – or shouldn’t be – a divisive one.

“We’re not that far apart on revenue sharing. That’s what Gary’s point is,” Daly said. “That’s why we want to focus on what the right share is and how we make this business healthy going forward.”

The NHLPA has made much about the 24 percent rollback from the last lockout, yet Daly frames the revenue share discussion in an interesting way.

Daly points to the increased value of the Canadian dollar and a “not as vibrant” economy to explain why it costs more to “generate revenue.”

“So the world doesn’t stay static. It continues to move,” Daly said.

Finally, Daly responded to the notion that the owners are losing the public relations battle to the players.

“Fan perception is important to us, but at the end of the day, we have to do an economic deal that’s going to work for our clubs and our owners and our business and that’s going to make the league healthy going forward,” Daly said. “We hope to do that with the support of our fan base.”

  1. sjsharks66 - Sep 6, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Fan perception is important to us, but we love money waaaaay more.

    • freneticgarfieldfan - Sep 6, 2012 at 11:32 AM

      Exactly. Dito for the players.

      • tatdue - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:34 PM

        @freneticgarfieldfan – “Dito for the players” – Why would you say that when the players are asking for zero more dollars….All they want is to be treated fairly. They want the owners to honor the contracts that they agreed on and signed. How would you feel if your boss asked you for a 24% reduction in your wage twice in 8 years?

      • tealwithit - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:40 PM

        I think I’d be able to live with it if salaries had grown by 71% over the course of those eight years.

  2. tpa43 - Sep 6, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Is this the end of the NHL over money? I got news for you. Nobody makes
    Money when it’s gone.

    • paledevil - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:28 PM

      I have no worry about the owners preseason games since of course they will have to be played to determine roster. I do worry about after the deal is struck i see a complete bottom out of NHL merchandise… Better contract the rights out because the is some bitterness and contempt.. Not sure if concessions will take a hit..
      I do worry about this firm resolve of the players(steel) .. Not sure for what … If it was 4 a comprehensive 10 year contract than yea fully support Having it be about future revenues is the wrong angle . Bottom line no fan can support not playing because of making 8.5 mil instead of 10 mil.
      The agents are the sway factor now…. Did they proceed in good faith? Or were those contracts signed thinking rollback.. If the agent goes high thinking ok in case of rollback The player is almost as culpable as I would think the agents keep their clients well informed.

      • paledevil - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:30 PM

        ‘Having it be about four year revenues is the wrong angle” correction

      • tatdue - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:37 PM

        I don’t know about anyone else but I have absolutely no idea what you are even talking about?

  3. norseman81 - Sep 6, 2012 at 11:33 AM

    Funny, doesn’t fan support and a healthy league going forward go hand in hand with the money they want to make? Walking a thin line owners.

  4. lostpuppysyndrome - Sep 6, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    When it comes down to it, the owners don’t owe fans anything. We want hockey but we aren’t the ones losing money, and these owners didn’t make their money by pouring it into bad investments. Hockey’s the greatest game in the world, but the emphasis should be on “game.” I’m sure they could have gotten a deal done right from the get-go to the rave reviews of fans everywhere but it could cause damage to the league as a whole later on down the road. I hope they get a deal done soon like every other fan out there but it’s not the end of the world if the season starts late or never starts at all.

    • norseman81 - Sep 6, 2012 at 12:11 PM


      I agree but, at the same time we know that the NHL has a lot of momentum right now. For the first time in my Adult life it actually has had a pulse. So, to see any lengthy work stoppage will only discourage that casual fan that may have been interested before from staying interested. We know that people are fickle so, once the playoffs come around they might come back. However, if the league wants to continue this positive trend, they would be best served by working out their differences and doing what is best for the game.

      • lostpuppysyndrome - Sep 6, 2012 at 2:58 PM

        I totally agree with your points. My only qualm is that I don’t think that we should somehow feel “owed” or entitled to anything. I do think it’s in the owners’ best interest to pay attention to their fans but the NHL is a luxury, not some God-given right. Otherwise, I agree with a lot of what other fans are saying.

    • jaredphi - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:22 PM

      I disagree with that first sentence pretty strenuously. The owners owe the fans EVERYTHING.

      Without us, there is no NHL….and there is no revenue for the owners OR the players.

      We pay the paychecks of the owners and the players.

      • lostpuppysyndrome - Sep 6, 2012 at 2:55 PM

        Right, without the fans, there is no money and no NHL. However, by saying the owners owe us, you’re also saying we deserve to have the NHL, that the owners are indebted to us fans, or that it’s some sort of right that we have to watch the game and they’re withholding it from us. They only owe us if we’ve paid for something and not received the product. Did you pay for a jersey? Great, you got what you paid for. Did you pay for season tickets last year? Great, you got the tickets to the games. Have you paid the owners for tickets already but you might not get to go to the games? Either no, you haven’t, or you’ll be reimbursed for those missed games. If the owners come up with a deal because they want to satisfy the fans, it’s either because A) it’s a business and they need to make money and/or B) out of gratitude and appreciation for their fans, not because they owe us anything. Do I think it’s good form to appreciate the fans for their business? Absolutely. Do I want to see the game on as soon as possible? Definitely. Do I think the fans should feel some sense of entitlement to this game? No. If the owners cared about the fans, they’d listen to our opinions, thoughts and idea, but they do not owe us anything.

      • lostpuppysyndrome - Sep 6, 2012 at 2:55 PM

        I also want to stress that I’m not trying to be a d*** about this but I just want to clarify my point.

      • tatdue - Sep 6, 2012 at 7:31 PM

        @lostpuppysyndrome – You say that you’re not trying to be a D#$k about it but only D#$ks argue over semantics…..

    • tealwithit - Sep 6, 2012 at 5:28 PM

      That may be the most sensible thing I’ve ever read in one of these comment threads.
      The owners are the ones putting their money on the line in order to own and operate these teams. In doing so, they of course take on some responsibility to the fans – it’s always important to ensure customer loyalty by making sure they’re happy with your product and policies – but they don’t “owe” us anything, especially if it’s to the detriment of the business. Fans (of all pro sports leagues) have a wild sense of entitlement. You rarely hear anyone praising the ownership or Bettman when times are good, and yet everyone’s so quick to blame and criticize them when problems come up. But that’s the nature of sports… Emotion over reason.

  5. wallio - Sep 6, 2012 at 12:29 PM

    “Fan support is important to us, but hey if we p**s off our fanbase we can point to lower attendence as a reason for a 4th lockout in 2017.”

    Fixed that for ya Bill……

  6. jaredphi - Sep 6, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    “We hope to do that with the support of our fan base.”

    ^Yeah, well guess what? You DON’T have our support.

    Every poll I’ve seen puts 9 out of every 10 NHL fans as siding with the players, NOT the owners.

    • tealwithit - Sep 6, 2012 at 5:43 PM

      I wish there were some way to find out how many of those fans are really educated in all the issues involved. If I had to guess, I’d say maybe 1 out of 1000 fans have business knowledge and have taken the time to find out all available facts and figures. And that’s a very generous estimation.

      • tatdue - Sep 6, 2012 at 7:42 PM

        Wow you liked your own comment so much that you gave it a thumbs up yourself eh…Well either that or lostpuppysyndrome did, not realizing that you just insulted him/her as much as everyone else…lol…You, “tealwithit” are a tool.

      • tealwithit - Sep 7, 2012 at 5:43 AM

        First of all, I don’t think I’d even consider myself to be one of those in the “1 out of 1000” group.
        I’m sorry if my comment sounded like an insult, but I’m not trying to offend anyone… I just don’t think that many people have the time or patience or desire to do any extensive research on this stuff. And I can’t say I blame them. Hockey is fun; business is not. Plus I’m not only referring to the diehard hockey fans, but also the more casual ones. Out of all the fans that fill NHL arenas during a season, how many do you think are actually getting on the internet regularly and seeking out every available piece of information? Most people have jobs, and lives, and don’t want to hear millionaires complaining about money and ruining the fun of the sport for them.
        I’ve spent an embarrassing number of hours reading up on this stuff, and I still don’t feel like I truly have a grasp on what’s going on. There are thousands upon thousands of pages of information being passed back and forth between the NHL and NHLPA. Even with a business degree, it would be difficult to fully comprehend all the details of this beast.

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