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Leopold on meeting with owners: “I don’t want any part of it”

Dec 1, 2012, 4:00 PM EDT

Jordan Leopold AP

If there’s going to be a players’ meeting with the owners, you can count a couple key Sabres players out of it.

Bill Hoppe of the Olean Times Herald spoke with Jordan Leopold, Buffalo’s player representative, and he had strong words about any possible meeting between the two sides.

“I’m not going to be there,” Leopold said. “I don’t want any part of it.”

He was only getting warmed up.

“I think it’s funny we have Don Fehr on our side. After two years, he seems to get under the owners’ skin. They want to remove one for one. I don’t know where this will lead us. It’s an interesting concept.”

Thomas Vanek was similarly skeptical of the NHL’s motives.

“They have a guy in place in Gary [Bettman]. They pay him. We have a guy in place in Don [Fehr]. That should be good enough. I think just another PR stunt to show that they’re trying to do anything.”

The amount of mistrust from many of the players for the owners is incredible. At some point, that relationship has to be patched up to make things happen.

  1. pastabelly - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    Not much more to say other than he’s right. The players gave the owners what they wanted last time and have given a lot back this Tim already.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 3, 2012 at 2:57 AM

      Confused by the thumbs down here… Its true, so… ?

  2. fortwaynekomets - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    I hope the players DO NOT GIVE IN AGAIN. what will it all be worth? another lockout in 2017?

    just start a new league already

    • stakex - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:48 PM

      This lockout is not because the owners are greedy and want more money. Its because the majority of NHL owners are actually losing money every year, and since the players are the main expense the owners want them to help close that income gap. The league would never want to lose games if they were all making money, so if this gets fixed right now there shouldn’t be a lockout next time.

      Side Note: I can tell you how this ends… its not really hard to see. The players lose, and sign the deal the owners have on the table now (or a worse one if the season is lost). Its just a matter of how long it takes them to come back from fantasy land and accept reality.

      • trick9 - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:58 PM

        You are wrong. Majority of the NHL owners are not losing money. 13 of the 30 teams are losing money, and that is not majority.

        Is this much better for those owners then? They are the sides that play in the areas where hockey isn’t that important. Whenever this lockout ends, they have lost 10-40% of their fan bases and will continue to lose money until relocation.

      • chrisvegas - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:26 PM

        @stakex – lol.. What a crock. I love how billionaires are ALWAYS losing money and always want someone else to take the hit for them, yet somehow they stay Billionaires. Man people are so naive today. No wonder the Banks and Wall Street were able to pull the biggest scam in the form of bailouts on the American people. They are NOT losing money. 3-4 teams maybe, but the rest are doing just fine. They have had record revenue 7 straight years. They tripled their TV contract revenue. They never imagined that hockey would do so well after the last lockout. Much of that is due to HD TV making hockey come over so much clearer for the viewer. There is a reason the Owners haven’t released their financials to ANYONE. They are making money, LOT OF IT. Just look at the record revenue. They are GREEDY! They want more of the pie. That is why there is another lockout. It isn’t the players. Wake up and use your common sense. Record Revenue yet you believe they aren’t making money. The mean while the NHL clubs are being valued at record levels as Toronto for example is worth a Billion dollars. A franchise isn’t worth a billion dollars when it is losing money. Stop buying the BS.

      • paperlions - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:18 PM

        Zero owners are losing money….a few team are allegedly losing money, but if we had the ability to see the books, I seriously doubt any owner is losing money….if they were, wouldn’t they be jumping at the chance to make the necessary information public to show their losses? But they haven’t, because they are not losing anything.

    • therealjr - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:56 PM

      I’d love to see how the players felt about going from guaranteed contracts to wondering how much, if any, money they might make in a given season. Or how they felt about the prospect of losing money. These guys have no concept of financial risk.

  3. id4joey - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    Juste saying it happened again. And I hope players see the lesser of 2 evils and take the deal.

    Nov 30, 2012, 5:07 PM EST
    Question, why would Bettman/owners suggest this meeting between players & owners? is this their subtle way of telling the players that Fehr is not communicating the owner’s proposal accurately to them? It’s doubtful that Bettman would take himself out of the equation without the owner’s consent. Why? Is it strictly a PR move? Lame one if it is.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 3, 2012 at 3:03 AM

      My third grade teacher used to tell me that if I loved the sound of my own voice so much, I should record it and play it as I fall asleep at night. Something you might want to try…

  4. travishenryskid - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    Jordan Leopold makes $3 million per year on a small market, non-playoff team to be a 4th/5th defenseman. He has never been responsible for a single ticket being sold to anyone that didn’t know him personally. He is the very definition being over-paid compared to what his true value actually is. If an AHLer took his spot, the league wouldn’t miss a beat.

    Thomas Vanek made nearly $50 million on a small market, non-playoff team to score about 60 points per year. He’s is probably one of the 10 most over-paid players in the NHL.

    Hearing these two players refuse to do what it takes to get to the negotiating table and get things moving shows how out of touch they are. They both make more money than Wayne Gretzky, yet they refuse to play. The players couldn’t be embarrassing.

    • woodstakes - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:52 PM

      LoL comparing what a player makes now vs a player in the ’80’s! Your kidding right?? What do you do for a living?? Did your job exist in the ’80’s?? Using your comparison you should be making what a person doing your job made in the ’80’s right?? IF The Great One played in today’s game… you think he’d be making $1M a year?? Lmao

      • travishenryskid - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:43 PM

        You miss the point. Irrelevant players are making obscene money because they are standing on the shoulders of great players before them who opened up this era. Who oversaw this unprecedented growth? Gary Bettman. I hate a lot of what Bettman has done, but the reality is, these players should be kissing his feet because of what he has done for them. Players are clueless, and anybody that takes their side in this dispute is also.

      • woodstakes - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:05 PM

        Thank you for the explanation.. I did miss that in your initial statement… I thought you were being more generalized than that. May bad man

      • millertime30 - Dec 3, 2012 at 10:45 AM

        3 mil a year is not obscene in pro sports.

      • millertime30 - Dec 3, 2012 at 11:30 AM

        And stop trying to give Gary Bettman credit for growing hockey revenue.

        He was commish during age of massive TV contracts. The MLB, NFL and NBA all saw massive growth in value over the same period. The only way to stop the value of your league from rising would have been to refuse to sign those TV contracts.

        But Gary even managed to screw that up. After (*becuase of?) the 04-05 lockout, ESPN declined their option to retain the cable rights to the NHL. NBC was the only network willing to purchase those rights, and even they wouldn’t pay any money up front.

        Does anyone actually believe that the exposure the NHL has seen while being aired on Versus/NBCSports (No offense, PHT) has been more beneficial to the league than that which ESPN could have provided?

  5. ddaveyy - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    It’s amazing that these guys don’t even want to try a face to face….do they not want to consider all options in an attempt to get an aggreement? They should…unless they don’t mind losing the entire season…


  6. id4joey - Dec 1, 2012 at 4:45 PM

    Why go face to face? They have agents to negotiate their contracts. What the hell are they going to discuss with the owners? They pay Fehr to negotiate, then let him do the job he’s paid to do. Just like they let their agents so the negotiating. You want to be useful players, here’s an idea. Sign the f en CBA and PLAY HOCKEY. Stop trying to be brainiacs.

    • woodstakes - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:00 PM

      Same could be said to the owners there joey… the players have conceded right down to what you want.. sign the f en CBA and PLAY HOCKEY. Stop trying to be brainiacs. Bet you don’t agree with that though do you? Some how in your mind its ok for the owners to make huge sums of money but the people responsible for them doing so should make jack right?? Players should feel lucky that they are making any money right?? The owners should make 2012 money but the players should make 1980’s money, then everything would be just right. In 15 years when the NHL is making $7 Billion then the players can make 1990’s money or should we just keep them in the 1980’s forever?? ALL the players want is they’re current contracts to be honored as in PAID as stated in the contract. Not make whole or make half or make equal.. just pay what you said you would pay them. I REALLY doubt the players would not sign a cba that says that.. they’d give up on the the FA issues and virtually everything else. ITS NEVER ENOUGH for the owners.. the players give and the owners stick out their other hand.

  7. orangeandblack67 - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:04 PM

    Well said Travis. Things like this continue to put players in a bad light. As a fan of the game and and those who play it I am finding myself to be more and more troubled by what seems to be a growing number of players that are contributing to this dysfunctional lockout.

  8. bubblehead22 - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    @uck them all!

    “Fehr is under their skin”

    They’re running out of people who give a @hit and counting on fans like us who are hanging on by a thread to come back. Not long ago I’d read 50+ comments on an article like this.

    I agree, Leopold is the “model” for what the NHL needs to fix. Like ANY other union, TAKE, TAKE, TAKE until there’s nothing left and then blame it on poor management or ownership when it’s all over. It’s just harder to see with a sports business where there is SO MUCH $$ involved. The NHL isn’t the NFL, players and owners hopefully realize that.

  9. zetaone - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:31 PM

    Can’t they meet in the middle somehow?

    Why can’t they have all 30 team owners, and all 30 team’s player chosen representatives, WITH Fehr and Bettman in the room ONLY for their respective side’s support. They are both just lawyers, they can simply instruct their clients non-specifically how, or what to respond to, and let the players and owners do the talking like mature adults.

    The point is to get the two sides to ACTUALLY VERBALLY communicate with each other in the same room (not their hired representatives) in a controlled environment, and not bantering back and forth on twitter.

  10. id4joey - Dec 1, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    woodstakes, listen son. Who is risking their dollars in a business? I assume you answered the owners, young man. And therefore you are correct. Makes sense that they should try to protect their investment. If the players don’t sign then screw them. Go make money somewhere else.

    • woodstakes - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:15 PM

      So when all the great players decide they don’t want to play for these owners constantly taking and instead decide to stay overseas… you going to keep watching a subpar product?? Be careful what you wish for.. I sure don’t want to see that. BTW how is it ok to offer these contracts then turn around and say we won’t pay them?? Why is that ok? What other sports business does this? Its one thing to protect your investment its another thing to be liars! Because essentially by being unwilling to pay these contracts they lied to these guys to sign them in order to have rights to them knowing they would not have to honor what they said they’d get if they chose to sign there. So if they don’t want to honor these contracts than they should become free agents, I bet the owners wouldn’t go for that though would they? Nope, they want it both ways.. as always… make the players concede then ask for more.

      • travishenryskid - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:34 PM

        If the business model is broken here, where there is BY FAR the most revenue of any league in the world, what makes you think the financial situation would work oversees for the long-term? Even with proposed cutbacks, even the very first owners offer which everyone called a joke, the players would be 1000x better off here than there. This is at the heart of the issue for me. The players are employees for the best company in the world in their line of work. Even if they have to take pay cuts, it’s still the job that every other worker in that business wants to have.

      • id4joey - Dec 2, 2012 at 5:05 PM

        woodstakes, they want to go overseas and play subpar hockey, then fine. Let them go. Can’t be worse than not having hockey at all. What would you do if you were told your next pay cheque will be minus 10%? Explore alternatives, right. And if you’re an owner and want to increase your profits you would look for ways to do that. Explore alternatives, right. And for every alternative there are consequences. Every one has right to do what is best for themselves, and live with the consequences.

      • shoobiedoobin - Dec 6, 2012 at 2:16 PM

        Does anyone else notice id4joey’s crippling insecurity about himself with every attempt to lord over someone by pretending to be older? It’s not even subtle. What a moron.

        I love when the schmucks like you think they know more than an entire union. Why aren’t we playing hockey yet? Have the Fehr brothers and the entire PA been so foolish as to not contact id4joey?


    • mp1131211 - Dec 3, 2012 at 3:25 AM

      I hardly think the hang up is over “protecting the investment.” The PA came back with three paths to 50/50. That investment is safe. This is about recouping money in the short-term rather than down the road and the players have agreed to losing big $$ in the long run for a short term payout (by wanting the owners to honor the contracts).

      In business, deals are cut to mutually benefit the invested parties. When one side exploits an opportunity to seize power and squash the other side, that other side is going to quickly go from business associate to competitor. That’s EXACTLY what you see here. NHL and NHLPA competing for the greatest returns from the same target market (fans). The

      Strictly from a business perspective, I think the owners have botched this one. They tried to turn the screws on the players too hard, too fast. What they will (probably) eventually gain by reneging on past agreements, they are going to lose out from an entirely wasted season.

      Investments aren’t the question. Those are safe as a 50/50 split has been more or less accepted.

    • shoobiedoobin - Dec 3, 2012 at 1:58 PM

      Oh give it a rest with the “son” and “young man” crap. We can all see it’s just an attempt to make yourself feel bigger because you got put in your place. Your perspective is skewed and you’re the only one who can’t see it. And to boot, you’re completely arrogant in your ignorance. By your logic the owners can do anything they want and the players have to lay down because their team, their rules, they’re holding the cards. I shouldn’t even have to explain how little sense that makes if you take more than 3 seconds to think about it.

      • id4joey - Dec 3, 2012 at 4:08 PM

        shoobiedoobin, now now son. No need to get upset because we disagree. I know it’s difficult to accept you’re a child, but young man, you will one day understand.

        Now, both sides can do what they want. Players don’t have to accept. However, by not accepting they stand to lose more money than if they were to accept. Are you old enough to remember what happened in 2004-05? If so, then please explain how players, for example, Jerone Iginla, recovered the $7 million he lost that year. Here you go, young man, an opportunity to prove you have the intellect to rationalize. I impatiently await.

  11. id4joey - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:12 PM

    Here here, travishenryskid. Applause is heard throughout the household. Finally someone gets it.

    • shoobiedoobin - Dec 3, 2012 at 2:00 PM

      He’s just as dense as you. You two deserve each other.

  12. cspsrbums - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:25 PM

    @ Id4 The owners risk everything? shut the F up you clown the Player risk there body ‘s to help the owners make money off of their skills, owners make money off of the player merchandise. But I guess you would have a shelf full of Bettmans bobble heads that you picked up at the arenas.or Jacobs Jersey
    The owners invest in the sport to make money off of the players so pay them.If you can’t pay them don’t offer a contract and if your losing money sell The team.These pigs are not losing a dime and not risking anything.they move money to show a loss
    The players should sit out the rest of this season and should not give a dime more to these idles of yours. Maybe some players should invest in there own team and start a new league. Thats the only leverage the NHL has is no compatition, thats why they hold the players at bay.We are still sick of reading your stupid post day after day on here, even back months ago when you said a deal was immanent, that never happened and won’t his season Now please go away and I am sure I can call you son.

  13. pastabelly - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    If teams are losing money, that’s because the NHL has teams in markets where it doesn’t belong. It’s no excuse for people making money hand over fist like Jeremy Jacobs to push for a lockout.

  14. cspsrbums - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    @ Travis I had to take a pay.cut at my job and I have no problem with the players taken cuts, but the county government I work for was losing money like the rest of the the US. But the NHL is showing record profits is not So why would you want to give the owners back any money If they are crying broke non of them should agree on these contracts ,but they and they want the players to save themselves. Maybe if the owners didn’t try to get all they wanted at once they would have a contract signed.

    • travishenryskid - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:04 PM

      Record revenues, not record profits, huge difference. The top handful of teams are making virtually all of the money, but the way it’s set up is that all of the teams have to spend nearly as much on players as Toronto, Montreal and NYR, despite having WAY less profitability. NHLPA’s original solution was revenue sharing, however that would spread the top teams so thin because they would be basically keeping the entire league afloat. You can see why this wouldn’t make sense or be fair at all to those teams. The only way to get the bottom half to be profitable is to cut player costs. It’s as simple as that.

      • woodstakes - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:10 AM

        That’s not true my friend… the top 6 teams could nearly stand up the bottom guys and STILL have profits!! My God look at what Toronto and NYR alone made in profits($155.9M)!! Those 2 teams could crutch the rest of them if they really wanted to keep these teams where they are located. That’s the key here… the NHL wants to keep the teams where they are, but here’s a little breakdown to prove my point:

        $129.5M in losses combined by ALL the leagues teams that showed operating income losses
        $279.2M in profits combined by JUST the top 6 teams that showed operating income profits

        So if JUST the top 6 teams divided it up they would have to give $21.58M each to make up the difference. That means those top 6 teams would still show profits of:

        Toronto: $60.32M (’12 Operating profits $81.9M)
        NYR: $52.42M (’12 Operating profits $74M)
        Mtl: $30.02M (’12 Operating profits $51.6M)
        Van: $8.82M (’12 Operating profits $30.4M)
        Det: $-780K (’12 Operating profits $20.8M)
        Chic: $-1.08M (’12 Operating profits $20.5M)

        So that’s just the breakdown of the top 6 teams, with them making equal sharing which isn’t the way it should go, the richest teams give more of the percentage. The next 6 teams combined made $70.1M in profits. So it’s not like if they broke all that up amongst all those teams they couldn’t still make a profit.. . considering the players already caved in to give up an additional 7% of HRR, so they should make what they made plus that 7% plus whatever growth incurs. I’m not saying its a ‘cure all’ but its not nearly as bleak as you made it out to be. I do agree that contracts need to be handled, I also think a soft cap should be instituted so teams don’t have to spend to a solid floor if they don’t want to. Both of which would help but the real key to this is a TRUE profit sharing, IF the NHL wants to keep teams in the locals they are in.

      • woodstakes - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:24 AM

        Forgot a point about the top 2 teams… if they had to do it alone… they would still have $26.4M in profits to split up.

  15. id4joey - Dec 1, 2012 at 6:59 PM

    cspsrbums, oh! Poor players. They cried in 04-05 and still accepted the salary cap. Now guys who are below average players make $2.5 mill risking their bodies. F em. Maybe they should become priests then and play with each others bodies. lol

    • millertime30 - Dec 3, 2012 at 12:18 PM

      that comes from the guy who got upset when i called Daly a fool.. nice

  16. joeyashwi - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:04 PM

    If the owners are indeed losing money, which is of course nothing but a numbers game, then they should sell their team to somebody who can properly run it or move it to an area where it will prosper. Why aren’t they dumping their “money losing” businesses? Easy answer, they aren’t losing money.
    To those of you telling the players to just sign the CBA and start playing, just stop watching hockey when it comes back. The players make the game. If the owners don’t like it, then DON’T own a team!!!!

    • travishenryskid - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:11 PM

      Obviously, businessmen are not lining up to buy the coyotes. Expansion is responsible for the revenues that allowed players to make the amount they are making now, but it’s a double-edged sword. Contraction is an answer, but the NHLPA would never allow it.

      • youthoughtyouhaditbad - Dec 3, 2012 at 1:58 AM

        Completely disingenuous, no one wants to own the Coyotes because it is a terrible market for hockey in a rink in a terrible place in Phoenix that makes it hard for most of the residents to get there easily.

        If an owner could buy the Coyotes and move them to Hamilton? I guarantee you there will be rich men lined around the corner to bid for them.

        Contraction is not the answer: removing teams from non traditional markets for hockey IS the answer. The Coyotes need to move. The Blue Jackets need to move. The owners got greedy because they all got a chunk of cash when a team is added to the league. Now they want it both ways, to claim the losses of the bottom 5-6 teams and say the league is unsuccessful when they’re the ones that approved adding teams that had no business being created!

        Then they block moves for teams to move to Hamilton, why? It would make everyone more money, but nope.

        You live by the sword, you die by the sword. The owners live by the greed, and they will die by the greed.

        How many of the bottom teams are expansion teams or teams moved from traditional hockey markets to non-traditional hockey markets? Atlanta, Phoenix, Columbus, Anaheim, Florida, Nashville…the one major exception is the Islanders but that’s because their rink is terrible and they were in limbo for ages trying to move to another location within NY.

        Now here’s another thing that some of you people do not understand (ok most of you) the owners can take huge tax breaks with the depreciation of their assets for accounting purposes. NONE OF THESE OWNERS ARE LOSING MONEY. You are just sheep who cannot understand basic tax strategies. These men are billionaires or close to billionaires: do you think they lose money on their investments? They did not become rich by being idiots!

        Read this article:

        While the owners write off the depreciation of their assets (player contracts, arenas-if owned by the team, etc) they also get to double dip by writing off the player contracts as expenses. This allows the owners to DOUBLE DIP. Oh, and while they might be losing incrementally small amounts of money year to year, they make up for it because when they sell the team they usually make 3-4 times the purchase price of the franchise when they sell the team. Not to mention the fact that owners also scam the taxpayers into building them an arena.

        I’m not pro-player, but this woe is me act from the owners is getting old. And it’s pathetic that anyone sympathizes with them. This is a business. They made the decisions to expand the league: not the players. They made the decision to sign the players to huge contracts that they couldn’t afford: players didn’t hold a gun to their heads. They killed a season to get THIS deal last time. The players have come to the middle. This salary cap business is bogus too. Let teams spend what they want to spend on players. Let there be no salary cap floor. Let the subsidization of the poor teams by the rich teams end: sink or swim. This weird mixture of socialism and capitalism in sports is starting to drive me bonkers. Make up your minds: grant every NHL player free agency and rip up all the contracts. Do you think the players will make more or less money? Make contracts a one year deal with a mutual option that either side can agree to renew but the second year is not guaranteed. After that year, the player is a UFA.

    • woodstakes - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:14 AM

      Your right travishenryskid but neither would Bettman since expanding into southern states was HIS brainchild. He would have to admit he was wrong and he’s not about to that because he can point to revenues and say “See I told you!” but anyone who actually looks at those revenues can see it only helped the rich teams get richer.

  17. antkowiak666 - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:13 PM


  18. drmonkeyarmy - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    A few thoughts: As Paperlions said, I sincerely doubt the owners are actually losing money. Open the books for an independant accounting firm and I will buy it. Until then, I am not taking the word of shady billionaires. Also, Id4Joey is a really smarmy commenter.

  19. cspsrbums - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:19 PM

    @travis I agree with you and ur right record revenue not record profit but I don’t believe all but a 2-3 teams are not making profit. The Caps have been selling out the last few years and ticket prices are way up where I can’t even afford ticket for for unless they are in a group purchase and you are telling me the lost money again last year. I really don’t think so Leonis owned the phone booth and the beloved wizards who just won there 1st NBA game this year. Do you think he moves money around to all those businesses to keep his profits on paper to a minimum I do so if they want people to back them put the real numbers out for people to see he is not a dumb business Mann.

  20. cspsrbums - Dec 1, 2012 at 7:22 PM

    So for Double and missed spelled word on I phone andI hate auto correct.

  21. mnwildthing - Dec 1, 2012 at 11:50 PM

    I am a new contestant in the “who to blame” contest. I am a season 9 year ticket holder with you can figure it out who. I have watched you castigate each side and each other. I am as pissed off as you all are. I miss complaining in the stands about my teams every play. I have the option to ask for my money back and say screw everybody – take that Mr. Owner, take the Mr. Player but I won’t because I really love the game when they play and they will some day if I live that long

    All that being said, it all boils down to your philosophy on America. Our country is where it is today because capitalism – owners making investments, hiring people, asking them to work (a novel concept to some), paying a decent, live able wage depending on what an employee does does and how much money his or her efforts bring to the company.

    Now it seams that a company (or person) making money, even a lot of money, is a sin, it’s not fair and I want it. If he won’t give it to me, I’ll show him, I’ll stop working, ha ha. I fact, we will form a group who will do the same, ha, ha, we’ll FIX that fat rich SOB. OH, what happened he closed the doors, now I don’t have a job.

    Sorry for the long story but I have several things that apply to our NHL buddies: 1)Don’t bite the hand that feeds you. 2)If you don’t like the soup, try another kitchen if there is one. and, Oh, there is always someone else coming after you that will like the soup. 3) don’t let the inmates run the asylum. Get my drift?

    There are good and great hockey players being born every minute. If you are patient, they will be new to that kitchen.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 3, 2012 at 3:42 AM

      “Our country is where it is today because capitalism – owners making investments, hiring people, asking them to work” ……. That’s where we were in 1930’s. America, from an economic perspective, is where it is today because of the fruits of organized labor leveling the playing field and industry regulations that prohibit those with lots of money exploiting the power that comes with having lots of money. The 2008 crash was from an unregulated area of the housing industry that allowed for incredible over-leveraging and inflated pricing. Asking for 50/50 split is fair- its like tweaking the regulations to ensure the health of the industry. But not wanting to pay signed contracts is… well, just morally wrong and not at in sync with what has made America what it is today.

      Sigh….. now, go ahead… call me names. Tell me I don’t know anything about America or capitalism or history. Go on… do it. I’ll wait.

      Feel better? Great. The truth is I am a business owner with employees. I bootstrapped my business at the start up and have ALWAYS found a way to offer my employees good pay, solid benefits, and, of course (it goes without saying!!) I have always honored my contracts. Turns out, I am also a historian by training with an emphasis on American History from the republic to the the modern day.

      • dsandeenguitar - Dec 3, 2012 at 2:03 PM

        Thank you for your honesty. You can’t pay it. Don’t offer it. You promised it? Make it happen.

  22. finfan88shark - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:20 AM

    Both the players and owners need to realize where that increases revenue comes from and don’t just assume advertisers and fans are going to keep supporting a league that does not care about its fans.

  23. finfan88shark - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:23 AM

    As to the players I don’t cheer for players I cheer for my team. Players have no locality to any team. When FA comes they go where the money is regardless of what team gives them the money.

  24. whatthepuck2012 - Dec 2, 2012 at 1:33 AM

    I’m becoming more “pro-owners” every freaking day. Doesn’t help to read Malkin’s poorly timed comments about not missing the NHL. (That translates to not missing its fans either, Geno. Bad bad bad PR move.)

  25. micasa81 - Dec 2, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    If you really think unions began from a bunch of unmotivated, envious laborers who were otherwise treated wonderfully by business owners…well, I don’t know what to tell you. You and I have read different histories of the Industrial Revolution.

    But that’s neither here nor there re: this dispute, because the players are not remotely comparable to a regular union. I think you underestimate just how huge a chunk of the current stock of elite hockey talent are nhlpa members. There are no 700-odd other human beings in the world right now who could step in and provide anywhere near the same level of play that the nhlpa does, not to mention the emotional investment fans have in current players. Even if the owners just decided to scrap the current players and move on to new talent, why wouldn’t the new players (who, by your description, are just as deserving as the current players) turn right around and organize a new union? They’d be stupid not to. Where does that leave your argument that this particular group of players are exceptionally ungrateful of their privileged position, and that those who follow will “like the soup” any better?

  26. bills4 - Dec 2, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    How could anybody with a 9 to 5 job side with the players! It is unreal to me how many bleeding hearts there are on this site. We have all taken pay cuts to help out the boss. It has ended up helping us keep our jobs which in turn has given us way, way more of an income in the long haul. These players have no loyalty to the fans ( follow the money at FA time) so why would fans feel any loyalty to them. I will cheer for the logo on the jersey and that is there because of the owner, you know, the guy who carries all the risk, and not the greedy players!!!

    • mp1131211 - Dec 3, 2012 at 3:49 AM

      “We have all taken pay cuts to help out the boss. ”

      Wow. Hey, you sound like a great employee that I would love to hire. How about I offer you 75K the first year, and then next year 70K because I’m going to need a little help in 12 months when I decide to take my perfectly good business model and expand it into new unknown markets. If everything goes as planned, the first three years in my new location will be extremely difficult, so we can cut 5-7K per year as needed. Wow, thanks man! You are really keeping my business alive! Great employee!! Great!!

      • id4joey - Dec 3, 2012 at 7:01 AM

        The owner’s desire to restructure back diving contracts is taking back what they agreed to. This has been clear from the get go.. They, as owners, have a right to make this request, and, players have a right not to accept this. But, what choices do players have?

        Luongo has $47,284,000 left to be paid on his contract, and to be paid as shown in the left column, and how he would get paid if they agreed to have their contracts restructured in the right column.
        2012-13 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2013-14 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2014-15 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2015-16 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2016-17 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2017-18 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2018-19 – $3,382,000 – $4,728,400
        2019-20 – $1,618,000 – $4,728,400
        2020-21 – $1,000,000 – $4,728,400
        2021-22 – $1,000,000 – $4,728,400

        The current cap hit for this contract is $5,333,333, and would be $4,728,400 if they can restructure.

        The yearly amount for a restructured contract may differ. The NHL’s proposal indicated that there can be no more than a 5% differential year over year. Is it really in Luongo’s best interest to lose 6.7m this year or lose 2m and make up for the lost over the remaining years of his contract?

        That’s why I keep hoping for the players to see the lesser of 2 evils. Am I that far off? Doesn’t it make more financial sense to take the hit now? Tell you what. If I get 100 thumbs down because of this logic, then I’m out of here

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

        The owner’s desire to restructure back diving contracts is taking back what they agreed to. This has been clear from the get go.. They, as owners, have a right to make this request, and, players have a right not to accept this. But, what choices do players have?

        Luongo has $47,284,000 left to be paid on his contract, and to be paid as shown in the left column, and how he would get paid if they agreed to have their contracts restructured in the right column.
        2012-13 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2013-14 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2014-15 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2015-16 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2016-17 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2017-18 – $6,714,000 – $4,728,400
        2018-19 – $3,382,000 – $4,728,400
        2019-20 – $1,618,000 – $4,728,400
        2020-21 – $1,000,000 – $4,728,400
        2021-22 – $1,000,000 – $4,728,400

        The current cap hit for this contract is $5,333,333, and would be $4,728,400 if they can restructure.

        The yearly amount for a restructured contract may differ. The NHL’s proposal indicated that there can be no more than a 5% differential year over year. Is it really in Luongo’s best interest to lose 6.7m this year or lose 2m and make up for the lost over the remaining years of his contract?

        That’s why I keep hoping for the players to see the lesser of 2 evils. Am I that far off? Doesn’t it make more financial sense to take the hit now?

  27. bills4 - Dec 2, 2012 at 2:13 AM

    You say crap about all the talent……. Give it time, you’d move on. If your team was winning, you’d follow.

    • micasa81 - Dec 2, 2012 at 2:32 AM

      My minor league team has been winning. I don’t care nearly as much, because they aren’t the same level of hockey. Ultimately, the NHL is the best league in the world because it pays more than any other league. Stop attracting top talent and I guarantee you, the excitement of rooting for your home team in what has become a 2nd rate league diminishes mighty quickly.

  28. mungman69 - Dec 2, 2012 at 11:40 AM

    The NHL is history.

  29. dsandeenguitar - Dec 3, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    The owners offered contracts they couldn’t afford. The players are not wanting to give back money guaranteed on the contract that was issued by the owners. I’d say the players are overpaid. But is it their fault for accepting their contract offers? No. Owners, stop offering contracts that you can’t pay.

  30. kscogg - Dec 4, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    Lets be honest here, what the league needs is total and unabashed contraction. Flailing teams in crappy markets need to go away. The sport is so watered down its unreal. Florida and Tampa don’t need teams, Phoenix and Carolina….sorry. Colombus and Nashville….adios. Shrink the league, make the on ice product better and the fans and the money will roll in. Bettman expanded too much too fast. That said, some one up there hit the nail on the head: if the owners are losing money then wouldn’t they be quick to open the books to prove it?

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