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Fehr opens up about CBA negotiations

Oct 5, 2012, 11:00 PM EDT

Donald Fehr AP

Much like NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, NHLPA head Donald Fehr answered a wide variety of The Globe & Mail’s questions following the announcement of canceled games.

Perhaps his most interesting bit came while he was discussing the fact that the two sides are discussing different proposals thanks to some disagreements about what hockey-related revenue should really mean.

“Look, the owners started out by running as fast as they could and as hard as they could away from the players, saying ‘Catch me if you can, even though every move you make is against your own interests.’” Fehr said. ” … This isn’t Ping-Pong. You have to distinguish between offers which are really made for the purpose of trying to reach an agreement and those which aren’t.”

Fehr goes much deeper on that topic as well as other issues, but here are some simplified takeaways:

  • Fehr said that the NHLPA is “open to talk about” a soft salary cap that would involve a luxury tax.
  • Responding to complaints about last weekend’s lack of financial negotiations, Fehr explained: “from our standpoint, if you’re bogged down on one set of issues, you go and talk about the other ones.”
  • Fehr didn’t rule out mediation altogether, yet he didn’t seem too keen on it, either.
  • His comments about teams getting fined for divulging details rank as some of his most interesting quips:

“That raises two questions: When in the world did we get to the point of regulating free speech in America again?” Fehr said. “And secondly, what is it we’re afraid they’re going to say?”

Fehr said plenty in this interview, so click here if you want more than just excerpts.

Read more:

Bettman: “I want my hockey”

Fehr sounds off on NHL for canceling games

Daly calls canceled schedule “extremely disappointing”

Report: NHLPA working on new proposal

Players, owners emphasized compromise in latest meeting

  1. firemarshal1 - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:02 AM

    Hey Don,

    This is not baseball. We don’t need another league of 8-10 contending teams, the rest of the teams crappy (halve nots). This years’s MLB Playoffs is a fluke. Normally, it’s only the big market teams competing against each other. That”s why the NFL is the best and most profitable league consistently.

    • hockeyflow33 - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:38 AM

      Like Milwaukee, Arizona and Tampa in 2011?
      Minnesota, Cincinnati and San Francisco in 2010?
      Minnesota and Colorado in 2009?

      I can go on but why?

      • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Oct 6, 2012 at 11:49 AM

        Two to three teams out of roughly a dozen each year does not make a trend. It actually supports the notion that there isn’t enough parity in baseball.

        When 60% to 70% of the same teams are always in the playoffs and you can directly correlate it to how much money they spend, why even have a draft? Just give the best players to those teams. They are the only ones that evidently matter.

        Baseball’s revenue sharing is the very reason the pirates don’t spend their own money. And, there is no way to force an ownership change to alter the mentality. It’s awesome if you are the Yankees, but if the yankees were in the pirates situation and hadn’t had a winning season in 20 years, yankees fans would be screaming bloody murder on these boards, or just give up watchin baseball.

      • hockeyflow33 - Oct 6, 2012 at 9:10 PM

        Life isn’t fair and if everyone made the playoffs it wouldn’t be a big deal

    • ucaneverscorenoughgoals - Oct 6, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      And, to add on to your point, no sport needs another pirates style scenario where a team doesn’t have a winning record for 20 years and there is no incentive for ownership to spend their own money because the revenue sharing allows them to stay afloat.

      Fehr can make all the statements he wants regarding free speech. But last time I checked the best way to resolve an issue was work it out between the parties involved. This need to manipulate public opinion through the media is sorority style BS that college girls get wrapped up in.

  2. blomfeld - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:30 AM


    This “hodad” Fehr appears to be finally coming to his senses by realizing that he’s essentially nothing more than some nerd at the beach, albeit with a pocketful of cash, who couldn’t swim if his life depended on it … and about bloody time I say ! At any rate, “surf’s up” man and we LA Kings can’t wait to start riding you people again ! :)

  3. ducksk - Oct 6, 2012 at 8:13 AM

    The “Furher” and Bettiman are doin what they are told. You really think they call the shots? You are a fool then. They say and do what they are told. The blame lies firmly with the BOG and the players. Both driven by greed. The American way.

    • blomfeld - Oct 6, 2012 at 10:49 AM

      Good point friend … though between “Der Fuhrer” and Bettman, my money would be on Bettman in terms of “who can surf” ! :) … anyway, I wouldn’t castigate Americans for the “greed” business … that sickening phenomena exists everywhere with most people and in “all” cultures … the only reason why we North Americans so often “take the hit” on that, is because our culture is prone to “transparency” in a way which no other is … or at least, in a way that such people or culture would allow …
      anyway …

      GO BETTMAN !!!

      GO 2012-2013 NHL SEASON !!!!!!


  4. antkowiak666 - Oct 6, 2012 at 9:13 AM

    just get a f!@#$%! deal done!!

  5. sampulls - Oct 6, 2012 at 10:18 AM

    Like the NY Yankees this year, last year, the year before, the year before, the year before, I could on if you like?

  6. acieu - Oct 6, 2012 at 11:32 AM

    Hey Gary stomp Fehrs milk white ass

  7. bleedingteal4life - Oct 6, 2012 at 4:40 PM

    “Both driven by greed. The American way.”….do you mean the NORTH American way? Last I checked, there was another country involved in this league.

  8. ducksk - Oct 6, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    North American greed. I stand corrected. I didn’t say it was wrong, but this what happens when greed and egos clash. No way out til someone feels they won. I live it everyday.

  9. firemarshal1 - Oct 6, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    Hey ducksk,

    You nailed it. The American news media declared Romney the Presidential debate winner on Wednesday night. All Romney did was not answer any of the questions, along with being rude and unprofessional. I felt like I was watching a Jerry Springer show, with Milt Romney playing as the village idiot.

    • hockeyflow33 - Oct 6, 2012 at 9:11 PM

      That’s because you’re a moron

  10. acieu - Oct 6, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    Did you call him a Morman?

    • blomfeld - Oct 7, 2012 at 3:08 AM

      friend … ignore this “hockeyflow33” idiot, for he is an “agent of upset” …

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