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Should the union, NHL seek mediation?

Oct 2, 2012, 8:12 PM EDT

Fehr and Bettman AP

The union and NHL met briefly on Tuesday and the results weren’t encouraging. The start of the regular season is in danger and close to $100 million has already been lost.

At this point, would the process benefit from the involvement of a federal mediator?

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly wouldn’t rule out the possibility and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr isn’t “averse” to the idea, according to ESPN. In fact, Fehr and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman have already talked about that possibility.

“A mediator can only be helpful if both sides are willing to embrace it and compromise,” Daly cautioned before adding, “We certainly haven’t ruled out that possibility.”

Right now the divisions seem to be so deep that the two sides can’t even agree on how the talks are going. Daly asserted that “no progress” was made on Tuesday, but Fehr had a different outlook.

“One of the things I think that everybody needs to understand is that the definition of ‘no progress’ that comes out of the NHL offices seems to be ‘they didn’t give us what they want yet’,” Fehr said. “Progress is giving them what they want. It’s not finding a way to come to a mutually-acceptable understanding.”

So at this point, fans would probably be happy with anything that has the potential to shake up these talks.

  1. revansrevenant - Oct 2, 2012 at 8:34 PM

    No, mediation isn’t the answer. Binding arbitration is.

  2. eyeh8goodell - Oct 2, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    No, Bettman must be pulverized to dust. He is in dire need of a humbling. Mediation won’t offer that. He has too much unchecked power and this is the time to strike him down……….much like Lord Vader cast Emperor Palpatine into the pit to finally rid himself and the galaxy of his evil. There’s plenty of hockey for the fans to watch outside the NHL if they need hockey that bad.

  3. sampulls - Oct 2, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    Ya…this is all about Bettman. Go crawl back under your rock.

    • eyeh8goodell - Oct 3, 2012 at 12:01 PM

      Try reading a newspaper sometime instead of sleeping under it. Bettman’s pretty much running the show.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/30/sports/hockey/on-hockey-bettman-is-the-undisputed-nhl-enforcer.html?_r=2&

  4. sampulls - Oct 2, 2012 at 9:03 PM

    2012 is the year of QB’s with good reputations going down in the drain….thought Rogers was above this….turning into a crybaby. Too bad, I sorta liked him.

  5. mnwildfan15 - Oct 2, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    50/50 split get it over with already any word on realignment yet?

    • hockeydon10 - Oct 3, 2012 at 3:01 PM

      I think they could get there, but not as an immediate solution.

      The players don’t want to reduce salaries, but are willing to reduce their percentage.

      Seems the solution would be to reduce the percentage over a few years. This would allow teams close to the cap to keep all their players, but the cap would go up very slightly (if at all) as the percentage is reduced. Once it gets to 50/50, the cap will again go up, allowing salaries to rise.

      The downside is free agency takes a huge hit. More teams stay close to the cap and would be unable to count on an extra 5-7 million every year to sign free agents. Then again, this opens up smaller markets to sign good free agents, resulting in more parity.

  6. firemarshal1 - Oct 2, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    To Mnwild15,

    I totally agree 50/50 split. If they don’t agree with the Owners. Go to binding arbitration, that won’t favor the NHLPA. The arbitrator may suggest an agreement similar to the NFL’s agreement. No guarantee contracts. No more W. Redden or S. Gomez contracts. The players can soak with that though. Oh the way, the players are really looking out for the fans and arena vendors? Where’s their counter proposal? Oh that right, there isn’t one.

  7. csilojohnson - Oct 2, 2012 at 10:33 PM

    There shouldve been one from the start. They should be required in these negotiations. You need an unbiased perspective to wade through the BS pissing contest that must go on on these rooms. This stuff seems elementary. Im no genius, but the bar on average intellect seems to be very low these days.

  8. cowboyscanada - Oct 2, 2012 at 11:58 PM

    Lots of people are sick of this. I really hope the season is completely wiped out. Enough is enough,,, Billionaires arguing with millionaires….

  9. blomfeld - Oct 3, 2012 at 12:59 AM

    WHY TRY TO FIX SOMETHING IF IT AIN’T BROKE ?

    Operation “let’s reduce the season by 20%” is going according to plan perfectly, so who the hell needs a bunch of stupid mediators ? It’s sad to say, but like with most things in life involving humans, this is all about “money” and nothing more .. don’t kid yourselves friends. Nonetheless, our season “will” commence by the US Thanksgiving holiday weekend, that I can guarantee ! … and don’t say then then you didn’t hear that first from Blomfeld, eh ? ;)

    Hey man … we LA Kings are like seriously “hungry” to do you people again ! :) :) :)

    • tatdue - Oct 3, 2012 at 1:56 PM

      @blomfeld – That’s funny cause I have heard that this crap might be over by that date also…only I heard it from Elliotte Friedman, Bob McKenzie, and Darren Dreger and it has nothing to do with your operation “let’s reduce the season by 20%” but it has everythng to do with the fact that that weekend is the start of the new NBC television contract which is worth a butt load of money! There’s always hope right…lol…

      • blomfeld - Oct 3, 2012 at 11:24 PM

        you know tatdick … you and your moronic ilk are “exactly” the reason why I’ve always preferred the company of plants and animals to that of my own species … sad but very true …

  10. monsterhockey - Oct 3, 2012 at 1:21 AM

    Mr Bettman have you noticed how much news this is making? No, me either. Congratulations to all involved on pushing this league back into obscurity!

  11. icrew29 - Oct 3, 2012 at 9:23 AM

    Do away with the union. All players can become independent consultants and negotiate their own contract. Players will have a lot more freedom and can play wherever they please. Players need to take responsibility for themselves and not rely on someone else.

    • hockeydon10 - Oct 3, 2012 at 3:27 PM

      No union = No CBA
      No CBA = No salary cap
      No salary cap = 10% of the teams accounting for 80% of the Stanley Cup winners for 10 years prior to 2004 (Wings, Devils, Avs)
      No salary cap = even higher salaries for the top free agents.

  12. jimw81 - Oct 3, 2012 at 1:21 PM

    mediation and Binding arbitration would end this lockout in 8 hours. but the problem is that gary is against it and will anything to get that 17% rollback.

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