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Poll: Whose side are you on in the CBA fight?

Oct 21, 2012, 5:02 PM EDT

Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr Getty Images

Back on Aug. 16, we asked our readers if they support the players or owners in the ongoing labor dispute. An overwhelming 81.79% of PHT voters sided with the players.

Since then we’ve gotten into the meat of the CBA talks. Both sides have made their stances quite clear and have taken turns rejecting CBA proposals that could have ended this lockout.

So, in light of what’s happened over the past two months, has your allegiance changed? Have recent events only served to reinforce your previous beliefs? For that matter, do you even care who “wins” anymore?

Especially after the heated exchanges of the last week, with the NHL proposing a 50-50 split of hockey-related revenues and then quickly rejecting the NHLPA’s multiple counter offers, this seemed like a good time to pose the question again.

  1. cannonblast14 - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    I dont see why everyone does not answer “neither”. Both sides are at fault for this lockout, therefore both sides are wrong. How can you pick a side if both sides are wrong?

    • lostpuppysyndrome - Oct 22, 2012 at 9:34 AM

      It didn’t ask who’s to blame, it asked whose side are you on. I’m also giving myself points for using who’s/whose correctly. All you bad Anglish speakers out there, take note.

    • mhazz84 - Oct 22, 2012 at 12:32 PM

      Apparently you’ve never voted for president.

  2. staaltostaal - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    Im on my own side, the fans’ side, the owners and players are both being ridiculous. I want hockey!

  3. GayCanuck - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    It’s not a matter of who you think is right or wrong, it’s about who do you sympathize with more: the millionaires or the billionaires.

    • pjmarn6 - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:48 PM

      Hockey is a business and a company. Players are here today and gone tomorrow. It is the club that fine, train, and hire the players. There is no other company in the world where the workers tell the bosses how much the company should pay the workers. The hockey players as do other professional sports teams are overpaying spoiled players, who begged to get on a team and then demand obscene salaries that most of them piss away.

      • pjmarn6 - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:49 PM


      • kyzslew77 - Oct 22, 2012 at 9:11 AM

        Right, because there are almost no other companies in the world that have employees who are completely irreplaceable. These are not assembly line workers. They have skills that no one else has. Thus, they have “leverage.” Somehow everyone who posts on PHT in support of the owners doesn’t get this. The owners are more than welcome to say “from now on, no player will make more than $100,000 per year.” And then all the elite players will go play other places where they can make more money, and the NHL will suck and no one will watch it because it’ll be full of washed out has beens and guys who barely played in college. Get it? It doesn’t matter who signs the paychecks and who earns them. It’s about who has leverage and who doesn’t. It doesn’t matter if the players are whining babies who waste their paychecks anyways. All that matters is that they have (some) leverage.

        Having said all that, I voted for “Neither,” because this is getting annoying.

  4. stakex - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:18 PM

    I’m on the side of “Get it the **** done already”.

    More to the point I think the players are being thick headed right now, and are being lead by a d-bag who has nothing to lose if the season is lost. However the owners set a sour tone to this whole thing with their first offer, even if they have shown a serious willingness to move from that position. So there is plenty of blame to go around.

    The one thing I will say is that the players are going to lose. I don’t care if they hold out for two years, they will lose in the end. They need to accept that and show more willingness to move from their current position… which hasn’t changed since this whole thing started (all three of their new offers are pretty much the same as their first offer when you run the numbers).

  5. nyrnashty - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    I agree with the players (employees) on the lockout. If the owners (employers) aren’t going to pay 100% of the contract that they agreed to pay at the signing, then how can you blame the employees for not playing? It doesn’t matter if you get paid a billion dollars or minimum wage it’s the principle of not honoring the contract. If I worked at Burger King and they decided to pay me less than they originally agreed to I’m saying F the Whopper and am going to one of their competitors like Mcdonalds. Mcdonalds could pay a little less starting out as long as I know they are going to honor what they agreed to pay me and maybe I can even get a raise in the future if I perform well. This is exactly the same as the players leaving NHL for KHL and other leagues around the world. A lot of these players might never come back to the NHL, but I hope they do. At the end of the day I want my pay check for doing a good job. I don’t care if I play for the Stanley Cup or any other cup in the world and I also don’t want to hear about any roll backs. I want my money when I was originally supposed to get it, or my employer could kiss my butt goodbye. I don’t care if it’s $7.50/hour, or Ovechkin money.

    • jennettalia - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:31 PM

      Darren Dreger ‏@DarrenDreger
      Of course players are entitled to existing contracts. NHL is open to any PA option that holds 50-50 and pays players full.

      The owners are apparently willing to pay out 100% of the contract.

  6. illadelphiasphinest - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    The fans side! Millionares vs billionares. Idiots. N in part is our fault (the fans) for spending so much for tix, jerseys, etc that made these selfish men who they are today. Both sides are ignorant and selfish.

  7. banger78 - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:43 PM

    Eat sh-t all you greedy a-holes. Professional my ass!

  8. girouxvy - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:46 PM

    This just sucks! The owners suck! The players suck! I think Bettman and Fehr are enjoying this dance and don’t want to stop tangoing anytime soon. I am so mad about this entire fiasco.

  9. dutchman1350 - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:50 PM

    They are fighting over our money! Lower ticket prices, and I will think they care.

  10. joeyashwi - Oct 21, 2012 at 5:54 PM

    I would say I’m on the fans’ side but honestly, they can lockout forever as far as I’m concerned now. Three lockouts in a row=three strikes, I’m out!

  11. mancave001 - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    I’m on the side of HOCKEY NOW.

    • mhazz84 - Oct 22, 2012 at 4:43 PM

      Apparently 3 people aren’t.

  12. txhockeydad - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    Here is the sad truth……you can’t pull this crap when you are the #4 sport. Too many casual fans will leave for good. Hockey is a boutique sport trying to act like the NFL. In today’s times, there are too many reasons for the fan to change the channel, especially with 2 twenty minute intermissions. I love hockey, and I miss it terribly, but I feel like both sides deserve the experience the ramifications of their short sided actions. They need to be reminded whos money it is they are fighting over.

    • slickvb82 - Oct 21, 2012 at 11:06 PM

      Well said my friend, well said!

  13. husky2score - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    As the great Larry the Cable Guy once (and still) says, GET ‘ER DONE… LIKE NOW!!

  14. trick9 - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:43 PM


    They are the side that has to go lower in these negotiations, owners are the ones that have nothing to lose but alot to gain. They could afford to offer the players 52% for the next 5-6 years and after that move to 50/50 split.

    • pensfan603 - Oct 21, 2012 at 7:05 PM

      No they cant you are as wrong as can be the players have nothing to lose they can just go over seas and play in europe and screw all the owners, (even though the euro owners are smart enough not to trust the nhl players ie only 3 per team in KHL and such rules). And the Owners cant afford it most cant even afford to a 50/50 split but they will do it anyways just so they dont lose more.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Oct 22, 2012 at 1:31 AM

        The KHL didn’t implement the limit on the number of NHLer’s because they don’t trust them, they did it so the wealthier/more popular Russian teams couldn’t gain a huge competitive advantage by signing a whole team of NHL all-stars. And also so they could protect most of the jobs of the players already employed by the teams. As for the lockout, I don’t like Fehr one bit but I put most of the blame on Bettman for the situation we’re in. He claimed all the league’s problems would be solved with the last CBA, he expanded into way too many markets where people just don’t care enough about the sport to spend over $40 for nosebleed seats, and he’s catering solely to the wealthiest owners when he refuses to consider any solution involving revenue sharing. Somehow he thinks he’s being generous with the “make whole” clause in the owners proposal, where all the contracts the players were given by the owners (sometimes through circumvention of the system they implemented) will be fully paid for two years, but then during year three and beyond there will be a massive clawback. They’re finally at a fair 50/50 split but c’mon honor the contracts YOU handed out, and figure out another way for struggling teams to make added revenue (such as contraction, soft salary cap, revenue sharing, OR just maybe it’s time to take a look at your own failing business practices and stop blaming everyone else).

  15. fishtales10 - Oct 21, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    On the owners side. Players are forgetting they have guaranteed contracts. If they could be cut like the NFL, would be more sympathetic to their fight.
    I hope they resort to replacement players. The new players’ talent levels will all be relative and be competitive.

    • hockeydon10 - Oct 22, 2012 at 10:13 AM

      And who, exactly, would these replacement players be?

      We already have leagues full of guys not quite good enough to make the NHL.

      I guess we could implement your solution by simply renaming the AHL to the NHL, because that’s what the NHL would really be with replacement players.

  16. pensfan603 - Oct 21, 2012 at 7:00 PM

    I dont see how people can side with the Players. First off the Owners have tried to compromise but instead the players insist on getting paid more. Second calling the Owners Billionaires is the biggest overstatement ever 20 of the 30 NHL teams lost money last year while every player i know of made money for playing in the NHL. With the Lockout The Owners all lose tons of money while yes the players get a short oamount of there contract cut but they are still making a ton and it is there fault anyways the NHL asked for 50 50 but the Players wont even try to compromise. All the Owners want is enough revenue where they can actually stay even on there investment of a hockey team while all the players want is more money to roll in during the night. Its not like they are asking for player safety or things like that they are asking for money, they all make so much i find it sad that they think they need more. If the players want to take 57 percent of the revenue i guess they can, but they know that when that happens 2/3 of them are gonna be unemployed because these franchises cant make money with the players getting so much money

    • hockeydon10 - Oct 22, 2012 at 10:19 AM

      Really? You can’t possibly have been following these negotiations and claim the players are insisting on getting paid more.

      Let’s spell it out for the less… dense.

      Previous CBA had players getting 57%.

      Players’ offer starts at 54.3%.

      54.3% is less than 57%, not more.

      After first year, players’ percentage goes down. Down means less.

      Perhaps a person could be stupid enough to see the proposals and still claim the players are asking for an increase. Since you’re able to string together sentences, we all know YOU are not that stupid. Right?

    • phillyphanatic77 - Oct 22, 2012 at 5:56 PM

      Pensfan, you must be dense if you’re legitimately claiming the owners aren’t billionaires. In order to own a professional sports franchise you must either be a billionaire (or very close) or part of an ownership group. It has nothing to do with how much revenue they make, that just means they aren’t making money on this specific investment. Every single owner has other businesses or investments that built their wealth. Like Ed Snider owns comcast and has enough money to support half the league. And when you talk about how much the players are losing during the lockout it’s true that individually it’s not close to the owners loss. But what you’re missing is the half-life on a players career is very limited, so the money they make during their short pro careers is much more valuable than the amount an owner makes for the length of time they can own a team. On the other points I agree 100% with hockeydon.

  17. bubblehead22 - Oct 21, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Fehr is a bad hire for the players and Bettman has nearly run things into the ground multiple times. Just like I’ve read in other comments: “I’m on our side, the fans, they’re fighting over our money.”

  18. firemarshal1 - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:08 PM

    There has to be a compromise on both sides. 50/50, by the third year or fourth year of the CBA needs to be at 50/50. Nothing less than by the fourth year.

  19. id4joey - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:10 PM

    The season has not started because the owners decided to lockout the players. Why not negotiate through the season? Or even throughout the summer. Hard to blame the players on this one. The owners know the last CBA that expired had some issues that need to be resolved. They also know that the split in other major sports is 50/50 or close to 50/50. They need to fix the issues to prevent themselves from screwing up economically. i.e. front loaded contracts counting against the cap, the need to protect the sunbelt teams etc… Beyond me how to choose one side over the other. Labor disputes are very complicated, and we the outsiders have a tendency to become irrational and emotional. This is a business issue.

  20. manchestermiracle - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:14 PM

    The only fans I’m willing to support at this point are the ones wisely putting their money back in their wallets. I’m on the side of the third-party folks who are the ones really getting screwed. All the support staff should band together and see if a class-action lawsuit is feasible. Maybe all the vendors, arena staff, owners of businesses near the arenas, etc., can sue the league for, I don’t know, how about for being swollen-headed dirtbags? What, that’s not a legal term? Damnit…

  21. stratomaticfan - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:28 PM

    Pretty simple…they all agree they want to get to 50/50 split. And that should be what it is on everything going forward. But Owner’s are being pigs. Either they honor the existing contracts on the way to a long term 50/50, or they admit they negotiated them in bad faith….in which case there’s a bigger problem between the two sides.

  22. icelovinbrotha215 - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:30 PM

    It’s ashame. Hockey is my #1 sport but it is #4 in America. I don’t think the NHL and PA understands that. Their ‘reality’ is much different than the ours. With this economy, people will find ways to save/spend their money and time as every day passes by without hockey. We all witnessed the struggles the NHL had coming off the the last lockout in ’04-’05. I can’t see how things will be any better this time.

  23. dbarnes79 - Oct 21, 2012 at 8:46 PM

    I think both are to blame. Negotiations should have begun months ago. So I take my side, the fans side. If or when this league comes back let them be punished for this crap, boycott NHL!!

  24. blomfeld - Oct 21, 2012 at 9:08 PM

    “TRUTH” is the side I’m on ! … always have been and always will be …

    As for the other various parties affected ? … apart from the support workers and small business owners either directly or indirectly impacted, as well as shut-ins who watch the game from afar, I have absolutely no sympathy at all for the three major stakeholders involved …

    Players: Wealthy millionaires who’ve know doubt applied themselves to be where they are today … however they’re extremely fortunate, as for each NHL player in the league today, there are at least a thousand other stories of youngsters who also gave it their all, but simply weren’t good enough in the end, to make the grade and reach their dream

    Owners: Nothing but a bunch of cold-blooded, ruthless, money-grubbing, albeit job-providing, disingenuous, deceitful, parasites … and that applies to concerned individuals and corporations alike

    Fans: a well-meaning group for the most part who pay the freight and make it possible for the bourgeois players and capitalistic owners to enjoy their lavish and decadent lifestyles … nonetheless, they do retain a choice as to how they will spend their entertainment dollars … NHL hockey is good, but it’s hardly the only thing available

  25. crankyfrankie - Oct 21, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    This is a lockout not a strike. The owners received givebacks galore in the last CBA but despite that have managed to make , some of, their teams lose money because of their own stupidity. They now are asking the players to give back even more. The owners idea of compromise is our way or the highway. Fehr was hired beause of his experience in dealing with short sighted billionaires. His job is to protect the players interest. The players are looking out for future generations in not leaving them bad working conditions. When the owners hired Frank Luntz to spin their lies to ,attempt to, win the hearts and minds of fandom I knew then who I’d be supporting.

    • id4joey - Oct 22, 2012 at 3:04 PM

      Excellent post cf. However, I think Fehr needs to also ensure not one player has played his last game in the NHL. After the last lockout there were 240 players that did not play again in the NHL. Not good, my friend.

  26. dlk75150 - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    I am over Fehr and Bettman but more so fehr after everything I have read. He doesn’t care about hockey, players or fans only the publicity he is gaining. Big mistake players for bringing him in. He doesn’t care about u. Stupid is stupid does.

  27. redwingsfan999 - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:09 PM

    I think it started with being the nhls fault but now I think it’s both their fault and the players, u really can’t choose a side, I just hope a deal happens before November

  28. dlk75150 - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:11 PM

    I also wish I had an employer who would do 50/50.

  29. sabatimus - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    My take is one that Woody Allen took in “The Front”: “You can all go f**k yourselves.”

  30. pensfan1 - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:36 PM

    Screw them all. I’ve had it with NHL level hockey. And they want me to come back and spend my money – buy shirts, buy jackets, buy pucks…. They have everything for sale on NHL shop. I’m surprised there’s not team logo condoms with a red light that comes on when you score. Buy, buy, buy. I’s tired of supporting either side. I’ll get my hockey at the junior level. They play hard and are hungry to advance. Unfortunately that is to the NHL where they need to be on contract for 20 years to get 15 years of ice time. At least that is until the current management style changes from perpetual lockout.

  31. bleed4philly - Oct 21, 2012 at 10:44 PM


  32. ddkendall - Oct 22, 2012 at 10:33 AM

    Millionares argueing with billionares over money. As far as I’m concerned they can fold the tent up. I will get my hockey fix by watching college hockey and enjoying the game being played as it is supposed to be played.

  33. schlitzy - Oct 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

    I support neither side!

  34. ndrick731 - Oct 22, 2012 at 5:53 PM

    Nothings changed. The owners are still greedy bastards who act like little children and need somebody to tell them not to spend too much money. I’m tired of hearing how much the owners have Invested. When’s the last time you heard an owner selling a team for less than he bought it for. But there are plenty of players such as Keith Primeau, Ian Laperrière and Marc Savard who will spend the rest their lives suffering for what they gave to the game. I don’t remember hearing of any owner getting a concussion or broken bone bone from being owner. The problem is nowadays the owners are not in it for sport but to make money.

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