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Martin St. Louis on lockout: “It’s tough to take”

Oct 27, 2012, 10:00 AM EST

Martin St. Louis AP

On the heels of the latest round of game cancellations, Martin St. Louis fumed to Tampa Bay Times reporter Damian Cristodero.

“I’m shaking my head every time I wake up,” St. Louis said. “We’re telling everybody we’re going to go to 50 percent, let’s share responsibility to get there. They don’t want that. Again, they want to hit us. It’s us, 24 percent last time and now 12 percent, and doing that when the game has grown the most, it’s tough to take.”

St. Louis seems to understand that some look at the CBA negotiations as squabbles between two very rich parties, but tries to explain the struggle.

“Nobody is crying poor here, and I think it’s hard for the fans to understand that,” St. Louis said. “But it’s about when there’s a problem we have to fix it all the time and they don’t want to take responsibility, too.”

If the lockout remains a problem that simply won’t get fixed, St. Louis admits that the draw of playing overseas is getting stronger.

“I want to play,” St. Louis said. “I need to play. If it’s not here, I’ll be playing somewhere. I don’t know when that date is, but every day I wake up, I’m closer to that date.”

More St. Louis lockout stories

He’s worried the lockout could hurt his career

“If we have to sit, we’ll sit.”

  1. manchestermiracle - Oct 27, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    As far as I can with my limited knowledge of NHL business, I understand the needs and desires of both sides. What I can’t figure out is why these two sides can’t/won’t sit down and hammer out an equitable agreement.

    The inability to agree on what constitutes hockey-related revenue is one sticking point. Both sides signing player contracts that owners don’t want to honor in the new CBA is another. Multiple other relatively minor issue include contract lengths, definitions of free agency, entry-level contracts, etc.

    The owners are looking at the expired CBA, comparing it to revenue growth since it was signed, and see lots of money they aren’t getting. The players are looking at simply maximizing their earning potential for the window of playing time they have. A 50/50 split on revenue sounds fair, but how to get there from the current 57/43? What is HRR? Owners want an immediate 50/50 split, players want to get there incrementally over a few years. Owners say HRR is X, players say it is Y.

    I’m thinking owners don’t want to open their books to player reps because it takes away any advantage of not including certain aspects of income that could be considered HRR. Players know this and don’t want to give back money already promised them in the last CBA.

    Okay, guys, am I getting any of this right? Whether I am or not, I do know this: I don’t watch hockey, or any other sport, in order to gain an in-depth insight into the business dealings that make the sport go. I watch because I want to see competition on the ice (or field). If there are no games then I find something else to do with my free time. I’m sure there are many like me. Keep cancelling games, NHL, and many of us will find permanent alternatives. Hey, I watched a QMJHL game last night and it was pretty good. Well, okay, better than no hockey at all.

    • id4joey - Oct 27, 2012 at 11:33 AM

      Excellent post Manchester. Wish there were more like you. I’m no genius when it comes to NHL business, but, I will offer the following. If both sidea are willing to negotiate in good faith then someone will have to step up as did Robert Kraft during the NFL lockout. See the following; http://www.pon.harvard.edu/daily/negotiation-skills-daily/robert-krafts-negotiation-skills-helped-to-end-nfl-lockout/

  2. rainyday56 - Oct 27, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Manchester: I agree with your point, we do not follow sports to get into the business aspects of it. The business end of sports should be invisible so as not to overshadow the games themselves. Since the introduction of the salary cap, the NHL business operations have been anything but invisible and have in fact dominated hockey headlines.

  3. fortwaynekomets - Oct 28, 2012 at 5:53 PM

    Manchester,

    did you watch Bob Costas Tonight with Jeremy Roenick?

    Jermey said the owners are SAVING money during this lockout!!!!!

  4. id4joey - Oct 28, 2012 at 8:59 PM

    Agreed! id4joey
    Oct 27, 2012, 4:46 PM EDT
    They don’t care about the fans. They’ll start caring when they have settled. Until then, they are looking out for their best interest. Players have already lost over $350 million in salaries that they will never never see. Owners have lost as well, but they will be around much longer than the players giving them more time to make up for lost revenues. The players are better off taking a hit now, as opposed to waiting any longer. Ultimately, they will end up loosing more and more with each passing week. The band of players realizing this will grow bigger and bigger by the day and they ultimately will put pressure on the PA to make a deal. Hockey will be here, and I’ll be watching live and on TV. NHL package and all. I have to admit that initially I was posting that we should strikekf they locked us out, but eventually understood the business side.

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