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NHL offers concession on “make whole” provision

Nov 2, 2012, 6:48 PM EDT

Gary Bettman AP

The 2013 Winter Classic has been canceled, but there’s still some hope for the 2012-13 season.

The owners are now willing to absorb a share of the “make whole” provision that was offered to the players in their previous CBA proposal, according to TSN’s Darren Dreger.

As we’ve previously discussed, the provision would reimburse players currently under contract for whatever they lose in absolute dollars in Year 1 and Year 2 of the proposed agreement. The plan was to do that by deferring compensation over the remaining years of the their deals.

In the old NHL offer, that deferred compensation would come out of the players’ side of hockey-related revenues.

NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr argued that meant the provision was simply “players paying players, not owners paying players. That is, players are ‘made whole’ for reduced salaries in one year by reducing their salaries in later years.”

With the NHL’s latest concession, that might not be the case. Sportsnet’s John Shannon noted that the NHL has some “qualifiers.”

If you’re wondering why the NHL waited until after the Winter Classic was canceled to make this offer the answer is simple: it didn’t. Although the public is finding out about it now, Darren Dreger said the NHL made this offer on Tuesday. However, the NHLPA is waiting for more details.

Still, this is a sign of progress at a time when hope seems to be in short supply.

  1. stakex - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:00 PM

    If the players were moving from their opening offer as much as the owners we would have a deal by now.

    I know thats not exactlly fair to the players since the owners opening offer was a sick joke and left a lot of room to move… but it really has been the owners making all the moves so far, and the players just sitting on their opening offer. Both sides need to give a bit to get a deal done, and if the players don’t move at all, there won’t be a season. Plain and simple.

    • rfcdubya - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:09 PM

      bettman is that you?

      • chrisvegas - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:11 PM

        Haha.. Exactly!

      • mmcneels81 - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:10 PM

        He’s not entirely wrong. The movement of the owners is only relative to their outrageous first offer. So really they haven’t moved much at all. They still need to come further. But the players have not moved an inch on the core economics. The players have their own “take it or leave it” attitude: they demand to be paid exactly as they were under the expired CBA. Well, hate to say it, but that isn’t going to happen. That deal is expired. This is a new CBA and the players are going to have to take a pay cut or there isn’t going to be any hockey. That’s the reality, like it or not.

        Both sides are stubborn as mules and I really don’t care for any of them.

      • theawesomersfranchise - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:11 AM

        Oh really Mmcneels they HAVE to take a pay cut from previously signed contracts, or there won’t be a season.

        Guess what
        There isn’t going to be a season because they certainly don’t HAVE to do anything like that.

      • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:20 AM

        awesome math skills awesomefranchise, the players with their infinite wisdom decided it is better to lose 100% of their salary instead of 12%. Brilliant!

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:59 AM

        NBA and NFL redid their CBAs with a 50:50 split and those sports are much more stable than the NHL. The PA needs to learn that and see they aren’t better than those sports and should jump at a 50:50 split.

    • chrisvegas - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:09 PM

      The owners making all the moves? The owners are the ones who refused to have more meetings while the players have said they would meet any day at any place to keep discussing a solution. The owners are the ones who wouldn’t even look at 3 counter offers. This is just another ploy to get public opinion. The owners aren’t moving closer.

      • blomfeld - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:47 PM

        “owners making all the moves?” …

        You bet ! That’s what happens they’re the ones behind the whole thing (ie: Bettman and a handful of power owners). Fehr and the players are essentially a bunch of “reactionary” sheep who will do “as per instructed” and nothing more. It’s not nice, but that’s the deal !

      • mmcneels81 - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:50 PM

        You like that word, sheep, don’t you blomguy? That’s a nice little word to go along with your cute little story. Don’t ever call me a sheep again, btw. Thanks.

      • blomfeld - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:18 AM

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:06 PM

      Yup, it’s easy for the NHL to move off of their initial proposal because that offer suggested NHL owners should become 19th century factory owners. Problem is it makes them look like they’re the ones willing to negotiate.

      Both sides are to blame, but the owners have the upper hand and the reality is the players have to budge because they don’t have a lot of leverage. It’s not fair but negotiations aren’t about fairness, they’re about getting the best possible deal for your side.

      • stakex - Nov 3, 2012 at 3:06 PM

        Exactlly. I know you and I don’t tend to agree all that much mrmojorisin, but I fully agree with that.

        The fact remains, like it or not, that the owners are just that… the owners. The players might be the show, but the owners run the stage and have all the money. Its not going to hurt the owners as much to lose a season (in fact, some owners are saving money with the lockout) as it will the players. Sure your stars are off playing in Europe, but most of your NHL players aren’t doing anything right now. If they lose the season, they will end up losing more money then if they just took a slight pay cut over the summer.

        Again the owners made a really bad first offer that gave them a ton of room to move… but they still have come to where the center is probably going to be. The players are still sitting on their first offer that the owners will NEVER accept, and so long as thats the case there will be no hockey.

    • mountainmantride - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:22 AM

      What in the name of Jesus are you idiots talking about…you dickhead NHL fans just don’t get it. You spend your hard earned money on this freakin’ joke of a sport and then they (both owners and players) add insult to injury by going on strike AGAIN to divide YOUR money up…who’s the dumb ass in the equation? Answer, YOU.

      • dreadpiratesteve - Nov 3, 2012 at 3:49 AM

        And the award for the most idiotic and uninsightful comment of the year goes to:


        (Thunderous applause)

      • millertime30 - Nov 3, 2012 at 9:12 AM

        because this is soooo much different than what NFL and NBA fans did during their respective lockouts last year..

        and it’s not a strike.. neither was the last stoppage in 04-05.. good try, though

      • jeff2000m - Nov 3, 2012 at 10:27 AM

        You are 100% correct…if we (hockey fans) would do the “striking”, i bet this wouldnt be happening. The nhl owners/players know they have us fans by the balls so why wouldnt they be locking out because of OUR money. A “fan lockout” is what would solve this predicament!!!

      • stakex - Nov 3, 2012 at 3:07 PM

        You called this a strike, and we’re the idiots? Ok then.

    • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:02 AM

      Stakex, you are dead on. The players will have to give up more than they are wiling for a deal to be made. The owners are in a position of power. It is their NHL. Not the players. The players are the product, which overtime will degrade for sure or get damaged before reaching end of life. Harsh reality, but it’s The nature of business seen from the eyes of businessmen which are the OWNERS of the product.

      • stakex - Nov 3, 2012 at 3:10 PM

        Yup. People can hate you for speaking the truth… but thats what it is, the truth. The owners will win this fight. Its just a matter of how many games the players are willing to lose getting to that point.

        The mistake people seem to make is that I somehow agree with the owners. Thats not the case. I simply agree with reality, and the reality is the owners hold all the cars and so long as they players hold their ground…. we won’t have hockey to watch.

    • millertime30 - Nov 3, 2012 at 9:08 AM

      unless you look at the previous CBA as the players first offer.. in which case, they’ve moved towards the middle quite a bit

  2. chrisvegas - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    You know what the Owners should just honor the contracts they signed. They should pay 100% of those contracts, and then transition to a 50-50 split. That is the right and fair way to do it. This is just another ploy to get public opinion behind them.

    • blomfeld - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:53 PM

      “Owners should just honor the contracts they signed” ? …

      Yes indeed … just as people should always be nice and polite to one another. But unfortunately that’s simply “not” the way it is … and it sure as hell isn’t the way it is here either !

      • elvispocomo - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:16 PM

        The NFL and NBA seemed to find a way to do that in their most recent agreements. If the NHL wants to have the NFL/NBA 50/50 ratio, they can’t be too upset when the players want the NFL/NBA protected contracts along with it.

      • mmcneels81 - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:48 PM

        Holy crap! Did Blomfeld just say something that makes sense?

      • blomfeld - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:25 AM

        Elvis & McNeel – now you two boys just better “back off” man … and I mean that seriously !

      • mmcneels81 - Nov 3, 2012 at 9:03 AM

        If you dialed down your schtick a notch or five you’d be less annoying. Otherwise people are going to continue to give you a hard time. Just a bit of advice.

  3. ducksk - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    You are all the same old. Take sides, blame a face, truth is we know little of what is going on behind the scenes…..mgt vs player, players vs mgmt…..blah blah blah. There is a deal coming soon.

    • blomfeld - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:14 PM


      Ducksk – Right on man ! For the life of me, I can’t help but be blown away by people’s apparent naivete ? You could know every written detail of every single exchange between these two parties and yet you still might not know a thing ! How can someone possibly know what’s “really” going on in these people’s minds ? … oh he said “that” and they said “this” etc ? The answer is that you can’t ! Or at least you can’t by listening to their words. The key is to always look at their “actions” or lack thereof, not what comes out of their mouths. In this case here, these guys have been sitting on the fence since day one. That and that alone should speak “volumes” to people about what’s really going on here !

      ps: sounds like we may be using some of the same “intel” channels, eh ? :)

      • manchestermiracle - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:38 PM

        As a fellow Kings fan I like you, blom, but your credibility here is disappearing faster than the season. Now that your claim that hockey’d be back for Thanksgiving has been exposed as nonsense, I also have serious doubts about your “intel channels.”

      • williplett - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:51 PM

        blomfeld – Oct 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM
        Cute story no doubt, however this will not happen … a major announcement is going to be made on the NHL front within the next 72 hours … stand by friends

        More than 72 hours have passed since you left this comment-and many like it-and the only thing that has happened is that the Winter Classic has been cancelled and word is it will not be rescheduled for this season-if a season even happens. Why should anybody put stock in your opinion or the info you keep winking about coming from an inside source?

      • blomfeld - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:48 PM

        Be realistic man, as we’re only at the 72 hour mark now. Obviously I can’t predict things to the exact hour here ! Nonetheless, something is definitely afoot and I’m convinced that we’re going to hear about it shortly. So please “stand by” as they say in the navy …

      • williplett - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:26 PM

        Blomfeld: You said “within 72 hours” something positive would happen. It was over 80 hours when you left that last comment. Why bother setting a time frame if you are just going to make excuses when you are wrong? Why?

      • mmcneels81 - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:45 PM

        manchester – you’re saying this guy actually had cred at some point? Wow, that’s pretty hard to believe.

      • hockeyflow33 - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:26 AM

        Oh cool, way to argue with yourself with different usernames.

      • blomfeld - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:29 AM

        check the latest update here friends …

      • millertime30 - Nov 3, 2012 at 9:21 AM

        Blomfeld = @HockeyyInsiderr?

      • phillyphanatic77 - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:02 AM

        Blomfeld has been claiming it is a massive conspiracy by Bettman and the owners to hold out in an attempt to move the seasons annual starting date to November, which would somehow benefit the sunbelt teams. Now that all of November has been cancelled and the winter classic he has no response other than to call us non-believers naive. Really? we’re the naive ones for looking at the situation in front of us and not making up ridiculous theories based on zero evidence? Just admit you’re as clueless as everyone else, maybe even moreso.

    • millertime30 - Nov 3, 2012 at 9:16 AM

      How long can you keep saying that a deal is going to come soon for, before you realize that you’ve reached a point in time which can no longer be considered soon after the start of this mess?

  4. med1435 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:20 PM

    Hope I’m just being cynical but this smells like just another PR ploy. On the heels of the announced cancellation of the Winter Classic everyone from the league side knows the fans are livid. So they throw this out there. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not on either side, but I do think the owners should have to honor the contracts they signed. Is it fair for players to get 57% of revenue? Of course not, but the owners are the ones who signed those monster contracts.

    • thebigeasy2002 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:24 PM

      I think you are right.

  5. thebigeasy2002 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:23 PM

    Some of these players just signed contracts back in August and July and the owners already don’t want to pay them? If I was the players I would demand that all contracts within the last year have to be paid in full. The reason is if the owners never really intended to pay these contracts they are frauds. It just isn’t right to sign someone to a huge contract and then 2 months later argue that you shouldn’t have to pay for it. I don’t know about everyone else but with the huge amounts of revenue coming in I don’t see why the players should have to get cheated out of their contracts. Look I’m all for a 50-50 split as I think that is fair, but I am not for owners getting out of their obligations when they have no financial reasons to.

  6. amehta256 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:32 PM

    Do the fans really care about the specifics? All we want to hear is “agreement reached, games begin on…” These reporters who come up with all these details have to ask themselves who cares to know? Does it make you happy to learn that the players will get their millions?

    • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:07 AM

      Exactly ametha, Why care about the battles of the upper clas? Just get the deal done one way or another, and let’s play hockey.

      • tatdue - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:46 AM

        If that’s the case then why do you keep spewing your pro owner crap?

      • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:21 PM

        tatdue, it’s not pro owner to see the impasse from the business perspective. Clearly they own the business, and therefore sign the cheques. Their capability to make up for lost revenue is greater than the players. Players are better off loosing 12 to 15% than 100%. That is not pro owner. What is your problem?

  7. sampulls - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:35 PM


    You mean the owners should honour the contracts they signed….unlike the players that hold out when they want more money?

    • chrisvegas - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:45 PM

      For the record I think when a player pulls a Terrel Owens he is in the wrong. If you sign a contract you should honor it whether you are a player or owner.

    • thebigeasy2002 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:48 PM

      How many players hold out each year? 1%?

    • hockeyflow33 - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:27 AM

      No one in the NHL holds out, wrong sport guy

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Nov 3, 2012 at 1:34 AM

      Under the terms of the old CBA, players with existing contracts weren’t allowed to hold out…so any player that held out was because they didn’t have a valid contract, which seems fairly legitimate to me.

  8. paledevil - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    If it pans out, Once again while suffering mockery and insults that Magnificent (Zastard SoB or genius…your choice) Blomfeld was right…

  9. eyeh8goodell - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:49 PM

    PR ploy, as others have said. This time it’s far more transparent (although releasing their last offer publicly was pretty transparent as well……at least for those with half a brain).

    • paledevil - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:59 PM

      going on past record

  10. trick9 - Nov 2, 2012 at 7:53 PM

    This is a good offer to start with.

  11. ducksk - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:10 PM

    Yep, go ask my employer and me if I am working under the same contract I signed 17 yrs ago. Not! All players knew under a CBA things could change. I knew it too, I had 2 choices, quit, or take it up the hind end. Welcome to our world. This is not government most of us work for.

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Nov 3, 2012 at 1:37 AM

      Sorry but a player’s contract is a legally binding document, the owners expect each player to live up to their end in good faith, it’s not unreasonable for the players to expect the owners to do the same.

      BTW if you’re at the same employer and making less than you did 17 years ago then you really need to hire an agent!

  12. sportsfan69 - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    Like a scratched CD, as long as Donald Fehr is leading the NHLPA there will be NO CBA. He wants a baseball type of deal. Again, the game that we once loved and adored will be a distance memory. Players getting paid without being held accountability. The owners should demand NFL type of contracts, that way the quality of the play in the game of hockey will not suffer.

    As an avid baseball fan, the game of baseball has suffered at the hands of people like Donald Fehr and their greedy and selfish demands. Does A-ROD ring a bell?

    • tatdue - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:53 AM

      Hey guy why don’t you just look him up and ask him out already, it’s obvious you have a crush on the dude cause you just can’t stop talking about him…..go get him tiger!

  13. ducksk - Nov 2, 2012 at 8:53 PM

    Deal will be done by thanksgiving. No one I recall said we’d be playing by then.

    • williplett - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:17 PM

      “My thinking all along has been that we’ll end up with a 60 game “plus” schedule, based on a start date by approximately November 20th. Don’t ask me how or why, but I’ve just felt that “intuitively” right from the start.” -blomfeld’s Oct. 22nd comment from an article about oddsmakers handicapping the date of a CBA announcement

      Did you mean just in this thread or in general?

      • blomfeld - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:50 PM

        I remain committed to that assertion …

      • williplett - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:27 PM

        blomfeld: I said this in another thread, but the CBA agreement is only part of what needs to be done for the season to begin. Free agency still needs to be completed, training camps have to happen, at least a few pre-season games have to be played, players need to be recalled from all over the world, the schedule needs to be revised and a whole mess of over things need to take place before the season can actually begin.

        Even if they announced an agreement in the next ten minutes, it seems highly unlikely that all of that-and more-can be done in time for the season to start Thanksgiving weekend.

      • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:14 AM

        What is it with you all? So what if the season starts in Dec instead of Nov as long as we get NHL hockey. And if the players choose to lose a year’s salary by not caving in, then it’s their loss. Money they’ll never see.

  14. ducksk - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    While De Furher and Bettingman can play the media like a flute, and more and more players are wading in. Please mindful all owners and mgmt including coaches are under a self imposed gag order and sticking to it. You mostly hear 1 side and from the other not much. When it is said and done u may or may not hear the whole story. Such is life.

  15. vegasroxie - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    I have family and friends that count on NHL games to make a living. Bars are empty and the staffs are suffering. Holidays should be tough without this income. This is something the owners and players forget about. Makes me sick to my stomach.

    • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:19 AM

      Yes! Roxie, they are the true victims of this mess. Not the fans, players or owners. I don’t know that owners and players forget, but right now suffice to say the care most about themselves, which is normal.

  16. id4joey - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:41 PM

    Ducksk WTF, blomfeld has been saying all along that we’d have a deal by TG. Where have you been dude ?

  17. id4joey - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:45 PM

    Do we really need to cater about what goes down! Just settle so we get some NHL hockey?

  18. 8man - Nov 2, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    No. Don’t do this. Kill the season. Kill the union. Crush the union. Jettison the players, once and for all. Let’s move on and this never happens again. It’s that simple.

    Yes, I’ll miss a lot of guys who wore the spoked B. But I got past Thornton being traded to San Jose. I’ll get past this. There is no more NHL this year. There is no more union. End it. Burn it to the ground and start over.

    Elevate all the minor league guys and begin anew. Game over.

    • mmcneels81 - Nov 2, 2012 at 11:34 PM

      There ya go. Killing the union might actually be good move for the players right now… the players who care mostly about hockey, anyway. That would do away with Fehr, first of all. I think we can all agree that f*ckrod is bad news.

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Nov 3, 2012 at 1:47 AM

      You may not like the Union but the NHL is 30 individual franchises run by 30 different ownership groups, if you “kill the union” you also kill the NHL’s anti trust exemption which allows them to set guidelines and act under 1 set of rules this means that the salary cap, entry draft, and basically all league applied working conditions cease to exist. If a team wants to spend $500,000 total on their players they can and if a team wants to spend $500 million they can.

  19. mississippimudslinger - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:13 PM

    There’s about a 20% chance they play NHL hockey this year , dont get too excited folks.

  20. mississippimudslinger - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:15 PM

    Blomfield and id4joey are the same person, if you think he had zero to no credibility before , this really shows it.

    • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:23 AM

      Hey! missi, what’s your problem?

  21. cspsrbums - Nov 2, 2012 at 10:15 PM

    Blom you know nothing you can keep saying that same comment about just wait something’s going to happen shortly hey dude you know what it eventually will but who knows when not you so stop with your antic your annoying

    • blomfeld - Nov 3, 2012 at 12:35 AM

      okay friend … so let’s just see what now actually happens, okay ? :)

  22. acieu - Nov 3, 2012 at 3:42 AM

    People getting excited about grown boys playing a game for lots of money and acting like our lives are dependent on settlement of a non life threatening labour dispute.

    • id4joey - Nov 3, 2012 at 7:27 AM

      adieu, what are you saying exactly? Is it somehow beyond you to enjoy a sport?

  23. hooockey - Nov 3, 2012 at 11:23 AM

    I’m a huge lifelong hockey fan. Like most of you, I am sickened by this lockout and all the posturing by both stubborn sides.

    When hockey is back, I will still watch the games on TV. But no more tickets, no more merchandise.

    Today I purchased a new winter hat. Normally this would be of my favourite NHL team. But this time I bought NFL. I need a new cap. This will be NFL as well.

    I still love the game, but I will not give one more dime to the NHL. Hell, I might even boycott the sponsors of NHL telecasts. If I’m watching a game and see a Molson commercial, I’ll buy Labatt, or better still, microbrew. etc. etc. etc.

    It is my sincere hope hope that the NHL revenue pie is halved causing southern American teams to fold, owners to lose money, and players salaries to decline drastically. If many people boycotted the NHL, the owners would be forced to drastically lower the ridiculous ticket prices.

    You morons are killing the golden goose.

    There isn’t a magic rule change this time to drastically improve the action that will cause everyone to flock back, like there was in 2005.

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