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Players to make presentation to owners after BOG meeting

Dec 5, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

Donald Fehr: Sidney Crosby AP

Today’s talks between owners and players, originally planned for this morning prior to the NHL Board of Governors meeting, have been postponed until after the BOG gathering.

This shouldn’t be taken as a bad sign, according to Yahoo!’s Nick Cotsonika. The players still expect to have “something” to present the owners; they just didn’t want to rush into anything and make a mistake.

There’s newfound, though still cautious, optimism that the lockout is close to an end. Yesterday the two sides (minus NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA chief Donald Fehr) held a marathon negotiating session, after which union special counsel Steve Fehr said, “It might be the best day we’ve had.”

It was originally planned that Bettman would hold a press conference after today’s BOG meeting, at around 1 p.m. ET.  Just don’t be surprised if that’s postponed.

  1. romasko - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    The NHL would never dare to agree to a proposal by the players

    • valoisvipers - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      Romasko If and when the players make a real offer, it would be accepted. To date they have not make a real offer that is anything remotely close to 50-50 no hooks no barbs.

      • desertfan - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:47 AM

        Not nearly that simple.
        Players have already agreed to 50-50 but how and when are the stumbling blocks.

        At the League HRR 70% of the teams would be over the cap on day one.

        Players do not want to have their pay cut by 10% especially the guys-many- who signed just before the expiry.

        Contract lengths, free agency and term for first contracts are other issues.

      • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:20 PM

        @desertfan, no, they have not. They have offered 50/50, but the players get their contracts guranteed (a deal that could leave player with as much as 65%). That is not 50/50. That would be like you and I running a business, and me saying, “We split profit 50/50, but if we make less than 2,000 in a week, I still get 1,000”. In no way, shape, or form, is that 50/50

        They deal should be 50/50, period, just like the NBA. When the players get back to reality, the lockout will end pretty quickly. Until then, it will carry on with no end in sight

      • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:22 PM

        Also, the whole “especially the guys who signed before the lockout” think is bogus. The reason they signed before the lockout was because those deals may not have been available afterwards. It is also why bonus money was sky high in most of those deals.

        You don’t get to make a deal early, to minimize any losses, then complain that you may have to take losses after that. It is at best, idiotic

      • trick9 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:32 PM

        somekat players offered 50/50 with the exception that they would still get parts of the contract they signed before the CBA expired. That amount players wanted was about 380 million while owners where only willing to pay 200 million or so. Because owners rejected that they have now lost 3 more weeks and over 500 millions thanks to it.

      • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:02 PM

        No, players offered 50/50, with their current contracts guranteed, not 50/50. They don’t get that now, why would the owners give it up? If they played under the old cba, the players can not get more than 57%. The owners want that at 50. The players want it so they can’t get less than 50%, but they still get 100% of their old contracts no matter what the league makes….they weren’t even guranteed that in old CBA

      • rogersjd16 - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:04 PM

        somekat – They’ve already started negotiating on that number. The $182mil apart last week. And hopefully much closer now. And the NBA was not “50/50 period”. The players “only” gave back about $300mil, what owners considered were losses during bad economic times.

        Further, it’s the owners’ own “idiotic” fault for not putting term lengths on contracts during the last CBA. To say the players signed “those deals because they may not have been available afterwards” is laughably misguided. You’re telling me the Minny contract twins signed because they thought they had to with the CBA expiring?? Puh-lease. They signed because they were the absolute best and most lucrative and long term secure deals being offered to them.

        If anything it’s the complete opposite, owners offered and signed those deals themselves because they had no intention of honoring them. Which, I also don’t believe to be the case but it’s far more likely than your scenario. Unless we’re talking Jeremy Jacobs.

      • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:17 PM

        Yes, Parise and Suter knew this would happen. That is why they asked for, and got, record signing bonus money (money that isn’t effected by dropping the players percentage)

        As far as term limits, I side with the players on that. If a team wants to give me 10 years, why shouldn’t I be allowed to take it. I don’t think the league should “save the owners from themselves”, it is the owners job to make sure that he has the right people in place to make those decisions, and if not, replace them.

        But to me, all issues outside of the 50/50 split are minor, and can be worked out once the 50/50 split is agreed upon.

      • rogersjd16 - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:03 PM

        This isn’t some new phenomenon. They asked for those lengths because A) it’s been the norm for players of these caliber (or what was perceived as that caliber) the past 8+ years and B) owners are willing to sign them. NOT because the CBA was coming to an end.

        Other than this, we seem to agree. But calling this the players fault only is pretty shortsighted. The owners started this with their offensive and insulting first deal, and it’s continued with the players making nearly every single concession. That being said, I do agree that now, after the past 6 weeks, it’s been Fehr’s hardheadedness that has made the “make whole” provision the major sticking point.

  2. tfaltin - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:18 AM

    Cue every fan’s nervous tick.

  3. joeyashwi - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:21 AM

    Without Bettman and Fehr in the room, there is actually a chance. Fire both of them.

  4. id4joey - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    Pat Brisson is playing a huge role as a mentor to Crosby. A lot of his input will be in the players presentation.

    • kitshky - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:44 PM

      Thanks for that Joey! – said anyone who for some reason can’t just read that information on the original post that you just read it off of a few pages over.

  5. capesouth - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:48 AM

    The real issue is whether these meetings w/o Bettman and Fehr create enough compromise that Bettman doesn’t flat out reject the thing, because whether he is present in these meetings or not, he still has say on if the proposal is accepted.

    • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:24 PM

      No, he doesn’t. At most, he has a single vote (the coyotes), and I doubt highly that the owners would allow him to go against what the rest of the owners wanted. He has 0 say on if the other 29 owners think the deal should be accepted.

      I don’t get what is so hard to comprehend about that

      • phillyphanatic77 - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:25 PM

        It is absurd to think that Bettman is nothing more than a patsy or yes-man. Yes, he is absolutely a representative of the owners, but his job is to oversee the financial well-being of the ENTIRE league. So if there is a deal on the table that only helps half the teams or the top-10 wealthiest owners want to end the lockout now, do you really think Bettman would ok it? and let his beloved sun belt experiments fall by the wayside? The answer is no. Owners change, players retire, and teams relocate, but there has been one constant through the last three NHL lockouts: Gary Bettman. The relationship between Bettman and the owners is similar to the relationship between the American people and their elected officials. The people voice their displeasure, concerns, and requests and the elected officials decide what issues have precedent and are essential to the well-being of all constituents. Bettman was chosen by the owners to represent their interests in just these types of negotiations. It is up to Bettman to decide what areas to pursue and what issues can be pushed aside or re-negotiated. When you say you “doubt highly that the owners would allow him to go against what the rest of the owners wanted”, it is irrelevant because Bettman would never disagree with the owners, he has the same vested interests in these negotiations as the owners. It is the success of the owners that has allowed him to increase his yearly salary from around $3mil (in 04-05) to about $8 million currently. And if the owners get most of what they want in this CBA negotiation (which is likely), you can guarantee Bettman will give himself another 115% raise in time for the next lockout.

    • capesouth - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:19 PM

      So the fact that there is progress W/O him there is somehow a coincidence? Eventually, both those guys will be brought back in and it is pretty clear at this point that they have slowed things down when present. Who is to say that won’t happen again when they discuss specific proposals? He obviously has sway over the decision, hence owners rejecting and walking out on players at every turn. Now all of a sudden, that isn’t happening…bc he isnt there. My point is that when he does come back, he could just as easily negate any progress. Pretty easy to comprehend, actually. It’s not about votes, it’s about the attitude and hostility that has marred these meetings.

  6. dbarnes79 - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    Please get er done!!

  7. blomfeld - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:27 PM


    It’s possible that this Player’s Presentation is nothing more than a theatrical exercise designed to cast them in a favorable light ? … or in other words, Bettman throwing them a “sympathetic” bone ? … at least that’s what I’m hoping. Regardless, any announced breakthrough will be more the result of the owners falling into line with Bettman, as opposed to the players doing so with Fehr. It truly is a different world today in 2012, compared to the last lockout back in 2004. Just this morning it was just announced that Canada’s # 2 railroad “CPR” is planning to axe 25% of it’s workforce. That alone is a very stark reminder of just how precarious our economy remains. Hopefully the players can realize that reality.

    • General Lee 1175 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:34 PM

      Can-Uh-Duh is a non factor as you are dumbfeld ……


      a redneck from Mississippi

      • kitshky - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:46 PM

        I think we all know you’re probably just a pimply faced troll living in Northern Alberta trying (unsuccessfully) to stir things up…

      • General Lee 1175 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:47 PM

        really?? do an IP address check lol… and Im stirring you up seeing how you just reacted .. again.

      • valoisvipers - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:50 PM

        miss mud Go back to screwing your cousin. you backward hillbilly.

      • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:07 PM

        Not true at all. If it wasn’t for the Canadian dollar getting so strong against the dollar over the last few years, the league would be in financial hell. The artificially inflated incomes of Tornoto, Edmonton, Vancouver etc, made the leagues final income numbers much higher than they were in reality. 8 years ago, if Toronto made $100 mil in profit, that was the same as the Rangers making about $60 million in profit. Now, that is for all intents and purposes, even.

        The strength of the Canadian economy (or the weakness of the U.S. economy, however you want to look at it), is the only thing that gives players a leg to stand on in these negotiations

      • habsman - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:18 PM

        What’s wrong with screwing your cousin?

    • elvispocomo - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:40 PM

      CPR hasn’t had record revenues the last several years. And if they did, they wouldn’t be overpaying for the fanciest trains and then telling the people they bought them from they were only going to give themselves a 12% discount on the price because it’s a hardship to pay the full amount despite record revenues.

  8. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    The players have offered to have revenue sharing gradually get to 50/50 and to have all contracts honored, which they should be. Fact of the matter is the league either needs revenue sharing to give less wealthy teams much needed cash or just have a luxury tax.

    • somekat - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:10 PM

      So wrong it is unbelievable. Their contracts aren’t guranteed to be honored under the old CBA, why would the owners give that up now? They get their contract honored, until it hits 57% of HRR, then they stop getting paid. That is why a good chunk of their salaries go to escro. If the league makes enough that the players don’t get 57%, they are all given checks to make it so that they get 57%.

      It’s not 50/50 if one side is guranteed something. I won’t even say that is simple math, because it is simple common sense.

      “fact of the matter is”, you seem to have no idea how NHL contracts work, and apparently think they work the same as all employee contracts. They don’t. Players get a percentage, period.

      • elvispocomo - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:59 PM

        Players have guaranteed contract in so far as they can’t be cancelled or renegotiated, but only a portion is withheld for escrow. That, however, doesn’t make them completely percentage-based as it’s only factored on that portion.

        Depending on HRR, the players may get slightly more or slightly less of the money that was withheld, but that doesn’t generally put a significant dent in the end result being paid to the players. For instance, in 2010/2011, players put 12.4% of their salaries into escrow (about $200M in all). They were already paid the remaining 87.6% as a part of their regular salary throughout the year. The NHL then agreed 8.4% of their salaries went back the players so only 4% of the players contracted salary was given back to the owners, meaning they still were paid 96%.

        Here’s a rough table of how it’s worked since the last lockout (‘+’ means the players got more than their contracted salary, ‘-‘ means they got less):
        2005-2006: +0.40%
        2006-2007: -2.76%
        2007-2008: +0.48%
        2008-2009: -12.90%
        2009-2010: -9%
        2010-2011: -4.0%

        But then you have to factor what’s included in HRR, particularly relating to your argument about 50/50 splits. The owners are allowed to deduct parts of the teams’ overall revenues to come up with the HRR number, so the players are actually getting less than 50% of the teams’ revenues when you factor that in.

        So the players asking for a clause that prevents their share from going backwards in any year is done to encourage the NHL to promote growth, and likely won’t be a problem. It’s similar to how in the last CBA, the players share of HRR was actually 54% with a clause that bumped it up to 57% if revenues were higher than expected.

        You can’t just blame the players for asking for more when the owners are giving them less.

  9. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    It’s only a handful of teams in poor economic standing causing this lockout to begin with. Find a way to channel them money and bam, lockout over.

  10. General Lee 1175 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:46 PM

    half a season , empty arenas, an angry fan base where millions will not return now …… oh how this sport has set itself up for some big time mockery …. again

    thats of course if ……( a big if)……. they resume play anytime soon

  11. ewoods6 - Dec 5, 2012 at 12:53 PM

    WHO CARES????? Just get it the F*** done already!!!!!!!

  12. cvgconstruction - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:08 PM

    Yeah there is a surprise, the people actually affected by the lock out made progress on coming to an agreement, maybe they need to leave Bettman out for keeps, let him go work for the soccer league!

  13. General Lee 1175 - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    half a cup! half a cup!! with an asterisk *****

  14. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:22 PM


    If that’s really how NHL contracts work it would’ve been nice if that info was out out there from the beginning. That’s why so many people say contracts should be honored and players have offered a fair 50/50 split. If I had known that’s how it works it might have changed my opinion a bit. Although I do think its still B.S. that teams rushed to sign players just says before the CBA expired.

  15. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:23 PM

    I do still believe that the root of the problem for the NHL is over expansion. Too many teams in areas that are not viable hockey markets. But contraction is unrealistic. There really needs to be a way in which poorer teams get help from the more affluent teams.

  16. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 3:10 PM

    And what is included in HRR anyway? Not ticket prices. That goes directly to home teams. Why not make equal ticket prices across all teams and divy up the total pot between all teams so all teams have equal ticket revenue? That will help struggling teams.

  17. gmenfan1982 - Dec 5, 2012 at 3:30 PM

    If this is the definition of HRR then why are some teams richer than others? From what it sounds like the owners share of the HRR is all divided evenly amongst all teams. No team generates revenue outside of HRR that gives them more money than others.
    the broadest sense (and with specific exclusions), HRR includes money from regular season and playoff gate receipts; preseason and special games (such as international exhibitions); national, international and national digital broadcasts; the NHL Network; all local cable, over-the-air, pay-per-view and satellite TV broadcasts; local radio; club internet sites; all club publications, merchandise and novelty items sold in and out of arenas; concessions; luxury boxes, suites and premium seats; fixed and temporary signage and arena sponsorships; rink board advertising; parking in club operated facilities; and some other stuff.

  18. fortwaynekomets - Dec 5, 2012 at 4:17 PM

    Guys, don’t get your hopes up about hockey starting soon. I don’t mean to be negative, just a realist. we’ve been slapped, drugged, and run over by the league, then spit on by Bettman. don’t ever forget this, fans. I also have helped other fans get through this time of shame, so ill share a lil secret of the best place to watch hockey (College, CHL, ECHL, etc.) its all on America One Sports online. Best thing ever during a NHL lockout!!!

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