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Brooks: NHL not committed to contract term limits, open to amnesty buyouts

Nov 7, 2012, 7:34 PM EDT

Gary Bettman AP

The NHL and NHLPA continue to meet in an undisclosed location in New York City, but Larry Brooks of the New York Post has details of what the NHL is willing to do to help get a deal done with the union.

In a series of tweets, Brooks’ sources tell him the league is not committed to contract term limits but is looking to put an end to front-loaded deals. Remember the NHL’s offer back in mid-October had a five-year limit on contracts.

Another huge thing that’s come up are amnesty buyouts. Brooks says those are back on the negotiating table and they were a key component of the CBA the two sides struck in 2005.

As for the “make whole” issue, Brooks says the NHL would assume the entire amount with a portion of it deferred but was unclear if that applied only to the first two years. The latter point of that could be a major sticking point in the process.

If the players’ union goes along with either plan, however, that would remove a major roadblock to getting a deal done. The league initially wanted the players to shoulder some of the load on the “make whole” provision.

  1. ron05342 - Nov 7, 2012 at 7:48 PM

    Seems to me that if the league had first proposed this deal instead of the lunacy the first offered the players union, we would be playing hockey right about now.

    • stakex - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:23 PM

      Perhaps.

      However its also possible such an opening offer by the owners would have been viewed as a sign of weakness by Fehr, and he might have staked out an even harder line position then he already has.

      In the end we’ll never know how things MIGHT have turned out if different offers were made. All that matters is where we are now.

      • tmoore4075 - Nov 8, 2012 at 8:43 AM

        This is kinda where I am. Sure the first offer was BEYOND stupid but if something similar to teh deal in October was offered back in July or whenever the NHL put it out I think the PA would have said no and fought for even more. Yes it sucks for the fans but the NHL does need to look out for themselves too. We might not like it but it is what it is.

        Also the one thing about contracts that was on the table before was you could only have a 5% difference I think between what the players salary was and the cap number. So Shea Weber couldn’t be getting $14mil and get a cap number of $7.8 or whatever his is. I think that pretty much eliminated the problem of the contracts. No one is going to take the risk of signing a Weber to a 14 year deal where they have to pay him $7.5mil at 39 years old. Charles Wang might but it should stop that problem.

    • thankscurt38 - Nov 7, 2012 at 10:23 PM

      Yeah, that is a sound strategy.

      Negotiation 101 clearly states that, in order to expedite the process you should ALWAYS offer your best offer immediately once negotiations begin.

    • valoisvipers - Nov 8, 2012 at 9:45 AM

      Negotiations 101 states you do not make your first offer, your best offer. Everyone knew we were going to go to 50-50 the only question is on how.

  2. antkowiak666 - Nov 7, 2012 at 7:50 PM

    please let them come out to the media tonight announcing they have a deal in place.is that really to much to ask?!

    • bensawesomeness - Nov 7, 2012 at 7:53 PM

      Don’t Jinx it

    • stakex - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:24 PM

      Thats probably too much to ask. Not because a deal might not be fairly close, but because there is probably a few other big issues to get done before they actually strike a tenative deal. I doubt a couple days of talks will get all the big issues sorted out.

      Its not too much to ask that such an announcement might happen at some point in the next few days though.

    • bensawesomeness - Nov 7, 2012 at 10:59 PM

      See, ya jinxed it

  3. xaf605 - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:08 PM

    I miss hockey

  4. jimw81 - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:09 PM

    So this lockout is about the owners can stop circumventing the cap? this issue could of been resolved in 86 hrs max.

    • jimw81 - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:10 PM

      i ment 6 hr. stupid keyboard.

      • manchestermiracle - Nov 7, 2012 at 9:34 PM

        Hell, 86 hours would have been a vast improvement over months of dithering.

  5. id4joey - Nov 8, 2012 at 6:22 AM

    I have one word for all fans who are wondering why the negotiation process could not have happened sooner. blomfeld.

    • davebabychreturns - Nov 8, 2012 at 9:05 AM

      His comments are bad, but I don’t think the league and PA would conspire to allow a work stoppage to ruin a month’s worth of hockey just to discourage them..

  6. lostpuppysyndrome - Nov 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    Wanna end front-loaded contracts? Put every year’s salary in a contract within 80-95% of the highest paid year. If you wanna sign a guy for 10 yr/$100 mil, go ahead, but you won’t be paying less than $9-10 mil/year for him.

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