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Bettman proposes two-week moratorium on CBA talks

Nov 15, 2012, 11:16 PM EDT

Gary Bettman AP

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly recently said that the league is done making proposals. It looks like the league might be done talking too, at least for a little while.

Commissioner Gary Bettman recently proposed a two-week moratorium on CBA talks, according to the Canadian Press.

“We are extremely disappointed in where we and the Players find ourselves,” Daly said. “And from our perspective, we have made repeated moves in the Players’ direction with absolutely no reciprocation. Unfortunately, we have determined we are involved with Union leadership that has no genuine interest in reaching an agreement. Regardless of what we propose, or how we suggest to compromise the answer is “no.” At some point you just have to say “enough is enough.”

All the same, if the NHL wants to talk, the NHLPA is willing to do just that.

“Of course everyone on the players’ side wants to reach an agreement,” NHLPA special counsel Steve Fehr said, according to the Star Tribune. “The players have offered the owners concessions worth about a billion dollars. What exactly have the owners offered the players? We believe that it is more likely that we will make progress if we meet than if we don’t. So we are ready to meet. If indeed they do not want to meet, it will be at least the third time in the last three months that they have shut down the dialogue, saying they will not meet unless the players meet their preconditions. What does that tell you about their interest in resolving this?”

If the NHL goes through with this plan, then games through Dec. 15 will probably be canceled in a week.

We’ll also be two weeks closer to the season being lost entirely with no tangible progress having been made.

If you want the season to be saved and you’re inclined to try and find the ray of sunshine beyond this cloud, there are two theories you can grasp onto. You either can believe that the talks will resume within the next two weeks despite Bettman’s proposal to the contrary, or that the time off will allow one or both sides to refocus and eventually resume the negotiations with a new perspective that will finally lead to a breakthrough.

At this point though, the NHL and union have given fans plenty to be pessimistic about.


Gretzky thinks last lockout eliminated “the big hurdle” to labor peace

Bill Daly “more discouraged now” than ever

LaFontaine “fairly optimistic” there will be hockey this season

  1. jimw81 - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    is nhl going to propose a two week moratorium on Christmas?

    just another tatic to get what they want. as i said in the daily post, Players are making good money in Europe, OK money in AHL, ECHL, and got fat escrow checks. They ain’t rushing back on Bettman,Daily and Jacobs terms.

    • therealjr - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:47 AM

      While I don’t disagree with your sentiment, the majority of players are not playing in Europe. And those who are spend a good deal of what they make on insurance. Maybe a handful of these guys are close to breaking even vs. NHL salary.

      Second – minor league salaries are squat, they’re making less than I am and I’m no 1% type.

      Escrow? Wasn’t that like not even 8% of their salary? Sure it’s nothing to sneeze at but do you think 80k per million they might be making is sitting well?

      No, they aren’t rushing back on ownership terms, but it’s ultimately going to be to their financial detriment.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Nov 16, 2012 at 1:39 AM

        You have the right idea, but your numbers are way off. Players who are in their entry level contract are all making $1 million or less. Since I know the Wild fairly well, Mikael Granlund signed his rookie deal this summer and he’s getting the max, at $1 million. So even players like Nick Palmeri who’s making roughly 675k, got 8% of that’s only 54,000 check he got. Now he’s playing in the AHL making $600 a week. While that’s the average pay for someone like you and I, chances are him and other have mortgages, car payments, higher utilities since they probably have a nicer home. Players in the AHL don’t have the option to go over seas. Eventually when the savings start to dry up, they will push Fehr to get a deal done.

        On the other end of the spectrum you have the players in their last big contracts. Think Selanne wants to end his career in a lockout? Eventually Fehr will get heat from that side.

        The guy above said players are breaking even in Europe with their insurance. I’m guessing they are making less when it’s all said and done. KHL and other leagues don’t pay as well as the NHL does. Take out the insurance their making money, but not what they are used to.

        Then there is the fringe NHLer who is making more than the entry level deals. When the lockout is done, they won’t be on rosters because GMs and owners will want to pay the cheaper entry level deal to the player who’s in game shape right now in the AHL. Don’t forget 140 players never played again after the last lockout. That’s not counting the Ron Francis’ who couldn’t keep up any more and retired early in the season.

        Players have the shelf life for their career. Do they want to miss 1 years worth of checks when they won’t be there forever? The owners don’t have a shelf life. They can and will sit out.

        Now that I am done with the players, we can only hope the NHL and NHLPA agree on a CBA. But hopefully the players will agree to a new CBA under 1 condition. Bettman resigns…

  2. alexb64 - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    “Unfortunately, we have determined we are involved with Union leadership that has no genuine interest in reaching an agreement.” Which is why you pricks PROPOSED a two-week moratorium? Seriously is Donald Trump working as the NHL’s secret advisor or something?

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:53 AM

      Perhaps the players can follow his lead and propose an indefinite moratorium on Bettman holding the title of NHL Commissioner.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Nov 16, 2012 at 1:27 AM

        Interesting business model: canceling games is more fiscally sound than playing them.
        Interesting negotiations model: Not meeting with union leaders is more conducive to reaching a deal than talking with them would be.
        Anyone else wonder if Bettman could pass a drug test?

  3. ducksk - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    Clear they want to bust the union or at least show them who writes the checks once and for all. Owners seem prepared at any cost to let it happen. I was optimistic, and hoped against hope. My bad. Too bad as these players fleeing overseas don’t seem to mind taking jobs from those players and there families….I’m not saying they don’t have right to play. They are risking a lot to hold out. Like it or not the owners have drawn the line in the sand. If the players don’t take it, then, well, no season, no pay at all this year except escrow. I must say, if the players are willing to risk it all good for them. 3 and 4 line guys are going to be in tough shape. At risk is the NHL as they’ve known it. Careers ended by age etc. it’s too bad. I said this a long time ago, he who has the gold rules. Period. Union seems to have pushed as far as they can. Its up to them to take now or leave it. I am furious at it all! I want my hockey!!!!!

    • badintent - Nov 16, 2012 at 2:38 AM

      You’re right !! NHLPA learned nothing from the last lockout smackdown . Bettman is doing exactly what the owners what him to do ! I’m really tired of all the Canadian hate at him because he’s American and East coast NYC. I supposed they would be happier with some left wing Bloc Quebecer loudmouth calling for more street riots i.e. Hockey riots, government union worker riots, college student riots,etc.Give it a rest, eh ? Have another Tim Horton donut. just don’t drive like him .

      • tatdue - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:40 AM

        Oh ya I forgot that Bettman gets a standing ovation when ever he’s at MSG or any other US arena……NOT!…..For sure hating Bettman is just a Canadian thing…..riots too!….lol….Get a life guy and maybe try watching a hockey game…..when ever they start playing again that is…..

  4. atwatercrushesokoye - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Translation: the union won’t just blindly accept what we offered so they aren’t negotiating.

    • ron05342 - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:38 AM

      Another translation: kiss the season goodbye because Fehr rather see his name in the newspaper then negotiate a reasonable deal.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Nov 16, 2012 at 4:31 PM

        Negotiate a fair deal? The players are getting nothing in these negotiations, ZERO! Everything is a rollback, the players have accepted that but want to minimize the impact, understandably. Now the biggest sticking point seems to be the players want the contracts that both sides negotiated in good faith honored, while the owners want a rollback on these as well. How is any of that the players unwilling to negotiate?

  5. dannythebisforbeast - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    Remember it’s a lockout not a strike.
    there was minimal if any negotiation prior to the lockout. they are in shock that the union has not bent over and are pathetically trying to PR their way to an agreement.
    Simple questions if the union Hans negotiated in months. Why would you need daily for a week, if they weren’t budging you might have noticed that after maybe day 2.

    Hockey fans- Bettman and daly think you are brain dead. HUrry back as give them your hard earned money

  6. ducksk - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    True statement. We may not like it but true.

  7. Stiller43 - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    If either/both of them wanted a deal, they would sit in a locked room determined to get a deal done. It isnt happening.

    Its pathetic the NHL would put out there a two week break in talks. Theyre only screwing the fans and lower level workers who earn at least a partial living at the arenas. The players are making a loving in europe, etc.

    How many issues could this be over, and how far could they be apart in those issues?! It cant take that long to say “i’ll give this if you give this,” and vice versa.

    I love my pens and want there to be hockey asap. Maybe fehr and daly/bettman need to be relieved of their duties.

  8. blkhwk21 - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    Who cares. It was better when they weren’t talking. I hope they cancel the season so both parties feel the pain. The fan base is fading.

    • mountainmantride - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:12 AM

      A fading fan base is exactly what will motivate the owners and players to get back on the ice and be damn thankful they have a sport that pays them all an insane amount of money for being entertainers. When fans leave for other sports, or hockey served up in other leagues the owners and players will come to the harsh realization that fewer and fewer people give a crap about their game and have moved on. Every day is another day of fans fading from hockey and they won’t be back.

  9. east96st - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    It will never happen, but I would hope the idea of a two week moratorium for the fans takes hold. Two weeks of completely empty arenas when they come back. You HAVE to see the game? Turn on the TV. Unless you’re a Nielsen family, you don’t impact the ratings. NO ONE goes to even one game for two straight weeks. I know, I know – between the die hard fans and season ticket holders who don’t want to piss away their money, it won’t happen. But wouldn’t it be nice to send a message to BOTH sides, that they NEED us and we CAN stay away? Two weeks. That’s it. No games. It’s doable if we want it bad enough. Don’t you want to send the message that, at some point, it’s just not worth the abuse anymore? Seriously, ladies and gents, how much s**t are we supposed to swallow and then turn around and say thank you for the lovely meal? Where is the line that can’t be crossed without repercussions? I don’t care if you’re pro owner, pro player, or caught in between. This is abusive. This is condescending. When do we, the fans, push back? Let them explain to the networks, to the newspapers, and, most importantly, to the sponsors why no one is at the game. Let them feel that pain for a mere 14 days. Show some f**king spine or this will only happen again, again, and again. And when it does happen next time? It’s on you. Because you let them know they can get away with it because you came running back.

    • soj83 - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:45 AM

      no one go to games for 2 weeks? hasn’t that been going on for years in Phoenix?

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Nov 16, 2012 at 1:20 AM

        soj83: Attendance wasn’t very good last season in Atlanta either, even on Willi Plett bobblehead night.
        east: Bravo! wish I could give you more than one thumb up.

    • woodstakes - Nov 16, 2012 at 1:14 AM

      east96st.. Thats an excellent post my friend! I couldn’t of said it better myself. I for one WILL watch hockey on TV as the contract is already been paid. However, I will not buy any merchandise nor will I attend a game again for everyday this lockout has lasted. Will I make a difference, NOPE! If everyone followed suit, yup! Unfortunately you hit it on the head, there’s far to many ‘sheeple’ who will run right back to the trough as if nothing happened. It’s unfortunate and I DO NOT BLAME them as I LOVE the game as well.

      • pens5829 - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:08 AM

        Since we’re “negotiating”, let’s make it a 2 for 1 deal. We, the fans, sit out 2 games for every game the NHL/ NHLPA has missed. Maybe Fehr and Bettman could sit on that for 2 weeks?

  10. therealjr - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:52 AM

    My moratorium on the NHL is going to be a hell of a lot longer than two weeks, that much I can promise.

  11. xjokerz - Nov 16, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    According to NBC sports last night the players wanted 65% if the revenue. Let the players choke on it. Close the doors on these morons

    • kicksave1980 - Nov 16, 2012 at 2:55 AM

      And you really believe the players are asking for 65%? Let’s not lose sight of who closed the doors on who here.

      • comeonnowguys - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:59 AM

        If that 65% number is accurate (first I’ve heard it, too), then hell yes I’d lock the doors.

        The NFL model is just sitting there begging to be copied. What is so terrible about that?

      • sippindasyzurp - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:19 AM

        The 65% came from the players not wanting there salaries reduced this year and paid in whole, which means they want the owners to pay them for the money that they have lost in part because of the lockout.. So if revenue went down to say 2.5 billion because of the cancelled games, the players still want there 1.88 billlion in salaries paid out..

        As for the NFL, it is difficult to just copy that model because they make soo much money of TV that almost every team could operate with empty stadiums half the season and still turn a profit.

  12. dfh120min - Nov 16, 2012 at 4:59 AM

    That about sums it up.

  13. buffalo65 - Nov 16, 2012 at 6:32 AM

    Did you hear about the bluejay trade? Even Toronto doesn’t care about hockey anymore. About to become a baseball town again.

  14. snoopyweiss - Nov 16, 2012 at 6:56 AM

    It’s time that NBC Sports added AHL hockey to the schedule. The NHL doesn’t care about its fans or the contracts (for players AND industry). Give the fans some hockey-college games are great but limited mostly to Fri and Sat. Maybe an AHL game of the week will let the bozos know that NBC Sports cares more about the fans. Give the fans what they want- good hockey.

    • ibieiniid - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      I don’t get how this gets thumbs downs. all my AHL posts get them too. are there some AHL haters out there that hate the AHL enough to give thumbs downs but not enough to dispute the commenter by replying? i’m with you snoopyweiss… although i’m against AHL Season pass being $200 -__________-

  15. tfaltin - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:27 AM

    I wouldn’t expect my 6 or 4 year old nephews to throw this kind of a temper tantrum. That’s all this is, the passive/aggressive form of feet stomping and toy throwing.”If you’re not going to give me what I want then you’re not being fair!” Give me a ____ing break. If I’m Fehr and the Players this galvanizes me because Bettman is such a go**amn tool, and I would never want to see that satisfied smirk of his.

  16. sjsharks66 - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:30 AM

    The players and Fehr are going to call this a bluff. Because they’re stupid. It’s like Recchi said, the deals are not going to get better.

    • comeonnowguys - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:01 AM

      Players were stupid to hire Fehr in the first place. They’ll be suiting up to play next year without their noses.

      Lock him and Bettman in a broom closet, get the deal done with everyone else, and hope the two eat each other once they start getting hungry.

  17. chiadam - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:31 AM

    Daly is right. The players don’t want a deal. That’s why they locked themselves out.

    Wait, that’s not right.

  18. flyeredup - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:43 AM

    Even if you already paid Directv for Center Ice, they will refund it if you complain. Buh Bye forever NHL! 30 years of support gonzo.

    • comeonnowguys - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:02 AM

      The fact you even have to complain concerns me.

  19. pkswally024 - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:45 AM


  20. dannythebisforbeast - Nov 16, 2012 at 7:47 AM

    Hockey games in Philly suck anymore except playoffs,regular fans need not apply for the most part.
    I had partial season tickets lower level 12 rows behind net. I literally watched two 12-14 year old boys next to me do homework and eat dried fruit through several home games. Couldn’t even get them to pay attention. I bought upper level after that and had much more fun at the games. long story short the corporate $$ is what puts teams in the black, and that will continue if your team puts a good product on the ice.

  21. 1clumsybear - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:19 AM

    We decided to offer Bettman new job as a commissioner of our 30+ men’s league. His prominent statue as a commissioner is well recognized and will be compensated with after the game Bud Light.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Nov 16, 2012 at 1:11 PM

      clumsy: His prominent stature, not statue?

  22. poonking5000 - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:19 AM

    I have officially lost all hope for an NHL season this year…

  23. aclassyguyfromaclassytown - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:40 AM

    Does anyone know if any cable providers are offering packages or channels that show European Hockey league games? I get home every night and flip through the channels to see what’s on and find nothing but basketball, which then just pisses me off in realizing just how much I miss hockey. I’m fine with the players staying over seas if I can at least still watch them play, but obviously would rather root for the team I always have rooted for and watch my favorite players play for that team. Bettman, you freaking suck. You’re not far from losing a lot of fans for a while when the league eventually does come back.

  24. thailer35 - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:50 AM

    Anyone else wondering where Blomfeld has been? All this doom and gloom seems to have scared him away from his usual “stay tuned folks” talk.

  25. antkowiak666 - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    just CANCEL the season already.the damage is done and the NHL will suffer for this over the next few years(when they do decide to come back and play).

  26. dannythebisforbeast - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:32 AM

    I heard blomfeld’s ” ” keys on his “keyboard” “broke” an he cannot post until he “replaces” said ” ” keys
    ” ” ” ” ” “

  27. davemeisner - Nov 16, 2012 at 10:30 AM

    I hope you enjoy your vacation, Gary.

  28. seals1 - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Let’s see how many fans you lose and what scares me even more is how many European stars that just don’t come back or never come over. The players are greedy, The Owners are Greedy, the fan pays for it all. I hate the NBA, You Suck Donald and You Suck Gary.

  29. hockeywithdrawal - Nov 16, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    Unfortunately, cancelling the season at the last CBA worked well, and gave Bettman all the fire power he needs to pull these tactics out of his hat at a moments notice. I hate that guy, and he’s all but destroyed any hope of a peaceful future for himself in hockey (just think about how loud those boos will be next time he presents the Stanley Cup).

    However, he works for the owners, and he was not sent to compromise – he was given a message to deliver. I think a lot of the players would accept the monetary terms of the last offer, if it weren’t for the fact that they gave so much last time.

    They need the mediator. NOW. There’s no more to be won from either side.

  30. id4joey - Nov 16, 2012 at 5:58 PM

    Just saying.

    Nov 15, 2012, 6:22 PM EST
    Alright NHLPA, your move. How much longer will it take before you crawl back to the negotiation table? Take the hit. What are your options? You play hockey for a living, and though many of you are very marginal players you are paid in excess of 2m per year. Not bad. Right? It’s NHL or what?

  31. jaybird22seven - Nov 17, 2012 at 8:15 AM

    Ian White said it best. Gary Bettman your an idiot. He is the reason for all the problems in the NHL.

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