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Bettman: “We’re at a loss to explain what happened” (updated with video)

Dec 6, 2012, 8:24 PM EDT

Gary Bettman AP

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addressed the media Thursday night, sounding frustrated at some points and outright furious at others.

He summed up this week of the lockout — and basically this entire process — when he described what’s happened as “an emotional roller coaster.”

Bettman said that the owners had a sense of optimism on Tuesday. However, that “almost inexplicably disappeared” on Wednesday.

Part of the problem, from the owners’ perspective, is that they put an additional $100 million on the table and the union’s response was “shockingly silent.” That left the owners “beside themselves.”

Bettman said that the NHL was willing to make certain concessions if the union moved towards the owners in three areas: five-year player contract limits, a “longer the better” CBA, and compliance issues related to transitioning to a new agreement (e.g. buyouts, cap on escrow).

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said that contract lengths in particular are “the hill we’ll die on.”

When the union came back with a counter proposal, rather than a yes or no response to the league’s key demands, the NHL promptly rejected the offer.

On top of that, the NHL has pulled the concessions that they made over the past week off the table. That includes the Make Whole proposal in its entirety.

Bettman accused NHLPA excecutive director Donald Fehr of “spinning us all into an emotional frenzy” by claiming that the two sides are closer than the league feels they are.

The commissioner is “disappointed beyond belief that we are where we are tonight.” (On that point, there aren’t likely to be many dissenting opinions.)

Now the question is how much time is left before the 2012-13 campaign is lost entirely. Bettman suggested that a season must be at least 48 games for it to be viable.

“We are where we are, as horrible as it is,” Bettman said.

Related:

Not good enough: NHL rejects latest NHLPA offer

  1. chrisvegas - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:27 PM

    Bettman is at it again. Ruining any progress that was made. This guy needs to go!

    • travishenryskid - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:39 PM

      Bettman wasn’t even there. It was when Fehr showed up things went south. And then he comes out and in the most obvious ploy ever to gain public support, tells us how good his offer was. This was after requesting a mediator. How close can they be if they are requesting a mediator? The players refuse to take 5 year contracts? Really, having them be guaranteed isn’t good enough? Fehr and the players are looking really bad right now.

      • dcfan4life - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:15 PM

        Having guaranteed contracts is a big deal for players, 5 years or not. And as it is clear that there are dissention among the players in what they really want to begin with, to have the NHLPA make some demands that even they should know they wont get makes no sense. No wonder Bettman is so mad. Who wouldnt be?

      • chrisvegas - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:45 PM

        I know he wasn’t there, but listen to his press conference because that is what I’m referring to. He doesn’t know how to be diplomatic and eventually pushes both sides further apart. We need someone who can bring these sides together, not apart.

    • mpg44 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:42 PM

      please re-read the above article.

      • frank433 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:53 PM

        Re-read? You really think people read things that have the name Bettman before they jump to conclusions and blame him for everything?

      • chrisvegas - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:49 PM

        I’m talking about the doom and gloom press conference. It is important for both sides to be positive and even though they may hit some bumps in the road to not go crying to the media. This is what Bettman brings to the table. As soon as the negotiations hit a speed bump, this guy goes to the media and cries and pushes both sides further apart. Why can’t people see that? Do you think his actions have helped get a deal done?

    • islanders1 - Dec 7, 2012 at 8:40 AM

      The guy throws and fit on National TV. He keeps saying he does not understand, I am at a loss, well get someone that understands……. The owner are the ones getting concessions not the players! There is not one improvement over the last CBA just takeaways yet they say they claim they are making concessions. Concession against what you do not take your marbles and run home like a second grader that did not like the trade on the play ground. Just unbelievable the owner have convinced themselves that they are giving in this process wow it is easy to see it is a matter of degrees of take. Look at the Edmonton owner and his new arena deal just kept going back to tax payers with his hand out threatened to take his team elsewhere if he did not get 100′s of million in addition tax dollars and was shocked when the city council said ……………..EGO’s beyond what anyone can imagine!

      • chrisvegas - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:47 PM

        Exactly man! That is exactly what I was getting at. Finally someone that gets it!

      • chrisvegas - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:58 PM

        If people just listened to what Bettman says. He claims the Owners are the only ones who want to get a deal done. He claims the owners are the only ones making concessions like you point out, when it is only the players who have given anything up at all. He claims that only the owners are doing anything to get a deal done while the players aren’t. It is just a bunch of BS from this guy and talking like this to the media is only going to push both sides apart. It is stupid. If he was smart he would be on TV saying we hit some bumps in the road and things fell apart a bit, but we are going to keep trying to figure ways to get a deal done, rather than the Owners are good and the players are bad routine.

  2. joshuakorr - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:32 PM

    Why doesn’t the NHL do what any rational actor would do, submit a counter proposal that moves a little bit. Its simple enough, BOTH sides have to move. If you don’t like the proposal, compromise where you can and keep the ball moving. Sheesh.

    • travishenryskid - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:44 PM

      Think of it like negotiating with the bank, where the owners are the bank and the players are you. The bank holds the hammer. It’s not as much a negotiation as it is you try to get the best terms possible. NHLPA fails to recognize its position in this process.

      • daburghdabest - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:56 PM

        Yeah it’s exactly like negotiating with a bank where the bank locks out all of their customers from doing business & they all just wait for the best terms possible instead of keeping their money or finding another lender for loans. Which in itself if you think about it is kind of like negotiating with a car dealership, where they lock you out from the car you drove to the lot in until you accept the best terms possible for a new one. Which is also like negotiating with a Burger King cashier, they lockout your stomach from eating until you accept the best possible terms on the cost of their food.

      • dcfan4life - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:12 PM

        These negotiations are so much more different than either of those analogies. In no way is this a negotiation with a bank and its customers, or a burger king and your stomach. Its a negotiation with the bosses and the employees. Big difference.

      • islanders1 - Dec 9, 2012 at 8:39 PM

        Ya that is why so many banks have gone under or needed bail out money from the tax payer. Your right NHL owners just like the Banks…………. Always looking for a hand out to build a new Arena or to bail them out…

    • mpg44 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:47 PM

      Please re-read the above article.

    • dcfan4life - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:52 PM

      Comparing this process to an actors contract isnt realistic. Each actor negotiates independly for each contract. These negotiations are for every NHL contract for the next 10 years. Still, any process would be better than these.

      • joshuakorr - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:57 PM

        When I said they should act like “rational actors” I meant people who act rationally. I didn’t mean they should model their contracts on the entertainment industry. I do understand how you’d make that kind of connection though given that both hockey players and actors are entertainers.

      • daburghdabest - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:35 PM

        dcfan4life – Dec 6, 2012 at 9:12 PM
        These negotiations are so much more different than either of those analogies. In no way is this a negotiation with a bank and its customers, or a burger king and your stomach. Its a negotiation with the bosses and the employees. Big difference.

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/sarcasm

      • dcfan4life - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:33 PM

        Ya know, if your saying a sarcastic remark, you dont need 3 versions of it to say the same thing. Who says things sarcastically 3 times in one paragraph to get there sarcastic point across?

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/idiot

      • daburghdabest - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:08 PM

        dcfan4life – Dec 6, 2012 at 10:33 PM
        Ya know, if your saying a sarcastic remark, you dont need 3 versions of it to say the same thing. Who says things sarcastically 3 times in one paragraph to get there sarcastic point across?

        I’m sorry your inability to pick up sarcasm has hurt you so badly. I can’t imagine the pain you live with, every time someone says something sarcastic to you like, “This is a REALLY good idea” you go through with a terrible idea because you couldn’t tell they weren’t being serious. I mean, I was extra mean and had the nerve to use THREE sarcastic statements, so I hope most people are more sympathetic to your handicap.

      • dcfan4life - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:36 PM

        Your response to my rebuttle insult uses a lot of words, but doesnt really say anything. Look man, you failed in your attempt to be sarcastic. You got called out, you tried to explain yourself, and failed again. They you insult me, and didnt do a good job at that either. You even exposed your ridiculous attempt at being sarcastic by trying to sarcastically refer to you using 3 different examples, being even more confusing in your insult than your sarcastic remark. I dont think anyone reading these comments is worried about my so called “handicap” as opposed to your failure at reading comprehension. Oh, and you dont have to copy and past my responses to let people know your responding to me. This is PHT, it has reply buttons. But your not an idiot right…?

      • daburghdabest - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:22 AM

        dcfan4life – Dec 6, 2012 at 11:36 PM
        Oh, and you dont have to copy and past my responses to let people know your responding to me. This is PHT, it has reply buttons. But your not an idiot

        If you hadn’t noticed, as the replies go further down you actually lose the ability to click reply on individual comments. I’m surprised you missed that with your reading comprehension skills. I hope we don’t need to add another handicap to your bio. It’s just more embarrassment for you, & you don’t even get a parking sticker or anything either.

  3. cruuuzcontrol - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    So rather than continue to negotiate, you pull up stakes, take your ball, and go home?? What a joke!

    What other professional sports league has contract length limits? I guess football with it’s non guarantees, but that’s not really the same. Is that supposed to save the owners from themselves? What a silly thing to have as a deal breaker… It seems so silly that I hope this is just more pithy posturing and that they still have Friday as a target.

    • woodstakes - Dec 7, 2012 at 1:16 AM

      I agree with you. I understand limiting variance in contracts i.e. front loaded deals.. but what difference does it make how long they are? I mean who do these contracts really go to anyway… ONLY the generational players.. the top 1% of the 1%.. Crosby, Ovi, Kovy, Nash, Parise, etc. Its not like they are giving marginal or 3rd and 4th liners 8 year deals. They get the 3-5 year deals and we all move on. So what are we talking about.. maybe 15 or 20 contracts in TOTAL!! THATS the be all end all here… like less than 1% of ALL the contracts handed out!?!?! Seems you could give on the contract length say 8 years and get your variance limit pretty easy to me. IDK I guess there I go being logical and we all know logic flew out the window long ago!

  4. Stiller43 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:34 PM

    They could…you know, counter the proposal rather than stop negotiating

  5. id4joey - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    Sources are telling me that more games will be canceled tomorrow. Sigh!

    • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:02 PM

      Joey ^

      • lionstigersandwingsohmy - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:23 PM

        Vipers, how do you know Joey and Blom are not the same person unless you are also one of those two?

    • valoisvipers - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:48 PM

      I think your voices will be right again Joey,more games gone and another lost pay check by the greedy brainwashed players. Another 5-6 weeks before we play a 46 game season.

      • 7ransponder - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:27 AM

        Stop replying to yourself with different accounts.

      • valoisvipers - Dec 7, 2012 at 10:47 AM

        7ransponder I can assure that Joey and I are not the same person and that neither of us are Blomfeld.

  6. markf88 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Ask an NFL player what he would do to get a 5 to 7 year guaranteed contract.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:08 PM

      The average NFL player would love having a 5 to 7 year career.

    • woodstakes - Dec 7, 2012 at 1:18 AM

      SO would an ‘average’ hockey player.. but the ‘average’ hockey player gets a 3-5 year contract

  7. eatitfanboy - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Everyone needs to accept the fact that there will be no hockey this year. We are extremely close to the NHL’s version of the fiscal cliff- the point where the owners lose less money canceling the season than they do playing it. Every once in awhile one side or the other leaks that they think they are close just so that they can blame the other side when the talks break down again.

    It’s not kind of like the last lockout, it’s exactly like the last lockout. The exact issues may be slightly different, but the process isn’t. Do yourself a favor and don’t waste your time reading this nonsense. There are only two headlines you need to pay attention to- “Lockout Settled” or “Season Cancelled”. If the headline doesn’t say one of those two things, don’t waste your time.

    • mpg44 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:50 PM

      You are wrong my friend …. There is plenty of hockey . The NHL is just one of many levels of hockey. Support your local junior and minor leagues instead. You will be quite surprised to see the game played with heart at the forefront instead of dollar signs !!

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:15 PM

        mpg, I agree, sort of. I’ve been quite enjoying the Canadian juniors and NCAA on TV, but we should not pretend there are no $$ in any of their eyes. Smaller ones perhaps, and many of the young men have no delusions about being the next Gretzky or even ever making the NHL, but many remain hopeful; indeed, many have already been drafted. And the fans pay admission and the ice and buses and gear cost money.

  8. thedavesiknowiknow - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:43 PM

  9. akmd1984 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    Both sides need to stop getting personally offended with the other side’s reactions to offers. This is business gentlemen, treat it that way.

    When my clients don’t like the prices I offer them, they (the sane ones at least) don’t get offended, they say hey that’s too much, can you do better? I don’t get pissed off and say screw you I’m outta here, I give a little to get the business.

    This is not hard fellas…

    • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:07 PM

      In a World where one person is selling a product or service to one commercial enterprise or individual this would be true. But, the League has to make this deal okay for 29 groups or individuals and the Players’ Union has to do the same for not only the current NHL players but future and past NHL players.

      I agree with not being offended at offers to an extent. But the owners only began to negotiate on Tuesday. Imagine how much time would have been saved if they had begun negotiating instead of stonewalling four months ago.

      • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:46 PM

        tomnickle, what are you talking about. The league have moved tremendously. They can not move anymore unless they get something back. Your characterization is just wrong.

        There’s 8 teams making money in the league. Only three making over normal profit. How the hell is this a situation that is workable?

      • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:50 PM

        visfen

        What have they moved on? Make Whole? Yeah, contingent on a 10 year CBA. Escrow? Nope. Contractual issues? Nope. Free agency eligibility? Yes, and their stance on it was a red herring to begin with.

        Ray Charles knows the players have conceded on issues greater in scope and quality than the owners have.

      • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:57 PM

        They’ve moved on revenue, they’ve moved on the make whole (they put a hundred million more into that). They gave an 8 year opt out for the CBA. They moved on the contractual issues in the deal that was on the table.
        What move on escrow are you talking about? They gave the money to them. In good faith. So what are you talking about?

        What the hell have the players conceded on, they basically put out the same deal three times.

        Doesn’t even matter, it’s the owners league. It has to work for the owners. Labor disputes with people like Fehr only hurt everyone involved except the negotiator, who gets promoted within the union.

        I think they should put something new on the table: If there’s no season, Bettman and Fehr don’t get paid. That’s the incentives needed here. Fehr has nothing to gain on getting a deal because he has his career as a union thug to think of.

      • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:01 PM

        At visfen.

        Revenue sharing is owners paying owners. Revenue split has been a landslide for the owners. I’m not sure which one you’re referring to.

        Players have moved on Make Whole, Revenue split, Contractual length and annual disparity. Those are the only areas outside of player safety and discipline that have even been mentioned publicly.

        The owners have moved on NONE of those issues to date. Unless you count Make Whole which was going to be a middle ground final destination regardless of the season’s start date.

      • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:39 PM

        They have increased revenue sharing. Revenue sharing is not a “landslide” for owners. It brings with it moral hazard which is a problem, but the largest problem of it is that the money only goes to pay down debt. The revenue share doesn’t solve the problem that if you add together the entire leagues revenue and their losses, they’re making under normal profit. I’m pretty sure if you add in the costs of loans they are even making a loss. Do you think that owners should lose money on owning team? Well they wont. So then there’s no season.

        The owners have moved on revenue sharing. They have moved from from 43% to 50%. That’s a huge move. They’ve moved on contractual length. They’ve moved on the make whole.

        I’m looking at the proposals on the table and how they have changed, you’re obviously looking at from the previous CBA. The previous CBA doesn’t exist anymore. It’s dead. The movement is from the deals you put forwards, it’s not from the previous CBA. This is something I think the NHLPA needs to understand as well. This is how a CBA works. If they want to move away from that and instead sue the league every now and then for collusion, that’s another system.

    • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:40 PM

      The leauge did move on revenue sharing btw.

      • tomnickle - Dec 7, 2012 at 8:33 AM

        Revenue sharing is owners paying owners.

        Educated yourself.

      • valoisvipers - Dec 7, 2012 at 11:00 AM

        visfen I’m 100% in agreement to your posts.
        tomnickle according to Forbes the Leafs had 82 million in operation profit the next 2 teams Rangers and Habs combined for that much the next 27 teams combined for a loss of 44 million. That basicly mean the whole NHL made 120 million and if you “profit share” that 30 ways it gives each team 4 million which is about 3 million less a year than Scott Gomez. Want to buy the Coyotes?

  10. buckeye044 - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    This is on the players. Owners went home Tuesday to review the points players gave them, then returned on Wednesday only to have the players change their own proposal.

    • daburghdabest - Dec 6, 2012 at 8:58 PM

      In a fantasy world where things happened even remotely close to what you said, yes that’s how it went down.

  11. tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    Gary Bettman. Three work stoppages. Approaching two full cumulative seasons lost under his leadership.

    Yeah, this is the players’ fault.

    Owners’ stake = hobby
    Players’ stake = livelihood

    Wake up people.

    • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:09 PM

      Do you honestly feel sorry for the players if they lose a few hundred thousand dollars off of their gigantic multi-million contracts they earn for playing a game played by children?

      I’ve lost so much sleep over it myself let me tell you…

      • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:11 PM

        It breaks my heart to know they may only be able to buy a stock Lamborghini instead of fully loaded :’(

      • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:12 PM

        You seem to have no idea what the life of an average NHL player is like. You think they all live in mansions and have butlers catering to their every need?

        They live a much better than average lifestyle. That doesn’t entitle the people who pay them to cut their pay by 50% over a ten year period while record revenues continue to flow.

        Or rather, the players don’t need to accept bullying and collective regression financially when they have alternatives elsewhere. The owners are well within their rights to continue stonewalling the players, but if they continue, they may not have a product.

        That’s reality.

      • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:17 PM

        They are being paid to do what they genuinely love to do. Somehow they’ve lost sight of that. And not only paid, but paid EXTREMELY well.

        At this point, it’s greed. Greed and ego.

      • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:19 PM

        @zetastone

        If you know any NHL players. It’s a limited number. Not all of them love what they do. In fact, the “love of the game” mentality among NHL players is probably a minority opinion. It’s a job to most of them, nothing more.

      • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:22 PM

        I was on the players’ side virtually this entire time. I’m usually always on the side ‘against the establishment’. However they have been nothing but unreasonable lately, and they are the ones in the wrong at this point.

        Fehr is much to blame for this. All we heard was “it’s going good… best day we’ve had..” Fehr joins the party and we’re back to the dumps again.

        If the players don’t like the deal put forth after ALL of this, they can form their own league.

    • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:50 PM

      Your analysis is silly. The teams have to make money too. It’s not “a hobby” to own a team.

      And the players get a larger stake of the revenue than in any professional sports. If they want guaranteed contracts and other things, then you have to buy these things with a longer deal so the economics will work.

      Maybe you would just rather go back to like 8 teams. How are you gonna compete with the KHL then though? It needs to be a larger league. The fact that the teams in the sun belt are having problems is to the majority related to currency fluctuations between the USD and Canadian dollar. Sadly this haven’t even been addressed.

      You standing up for the players might make you feel good. Because you like them. Well the CBA isn’t about that. It’s about making the economics of the league work. What the hell more can the league give up?

      • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:54 PM

        CBA stands for Collective Bargaining.

        The league didn’t even begin to negotiate until Tuesday night. You can accuse me of being a player apologist all you want even though I have don’t the same to you regarding the owners.

        Fact is, the owners got more accomplished in one day of negotiating than Gary Bettman did in four months. What does that say about this process?

        Bettman was the one constant that changed. The players have been involved from the beginning and stayed.

        How anyone can blame this on the players after Bettman’s continuing role in labour unrest and work stoppages just proves the notion that there’s an idiot born every minute.

      • visfen - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:29 PM

        They wanted to start negotiating a year ago, but Fehr obviously wanted the leverage of damaging the season, he didn’t even propose a deal until August. The League have essentially negotiated with themselves since them, moving from 57% to 50% in revenue.

        I’m an apologist for the league. I’m hardly advocating the owners should make more money. I’m advocating that they shouldn’t lose money every year. At least go to Forbes and check the numbers. There’s merely 6 teams making normal profit. That’s it. That is not workable.

        The owners gave up things contingent upon the players giving things. It’s sort of like if I buy your car for $10k. Then when I show up, I only take $8k with me. Do you think that works? It doesn’t work at all if you’re selling that car for the ten grand in order to pay your mortgage. My “negotiating” just got you booted out of your house.

        I’m not blaming the players. I’m telling you they have to move more, or this is not going to happen. Bettman is still in the process because he’s doing what the owners ask him to do, he’s following the order of the BOG. I’m sure a lot of fans like hating Bettman because they don’t want to think about the fact that the NHL is a business too, but it is, and it has to be able to work like a business as well, otherwise the sport will suffer.

        The real reason for the labor unrest in the NHL is because so much money comes from ticket sales. So it’s a very effective way for the players to get leverage. It’s not the fault of Bettman. It’s how the NHL functions. It’s kinda like how labor strikes work really well for nurses and policemen (which is usually why they are never allowed by governments).

        The CBA is about the economics. This isn’t some cool movie where you negotiate tough and you “win”. You have to make it work. The players will have to give on economics, they have to buy the things they want. This is how it works. If they don’t want to pay the price that the math comes out to, well then they’re having a dispute with math – not the league.

        But at least agree with me on this, a good start would be this: If there is no season neither Fehr or Bettman should get a penny in pay. Their salary should be contingent upon reaching a deal. Bettman have already given up pretty much what he can, well Fehr is just trying to make a name for himself so he can advance his career. If he doesn’t know this is the case, then he needs better accountants.

      • woodstakes - Dec 7, 2012 at 1:35 AM

        If you believe ANY of these owners that have been in the league for less than 20 years really got into owning a sport franchise for anything other than prestige your nuts! Especially a hockey team.. ANYWHERE other than the ‘originals’ or other Canadian areas is probably at best EVER going to make you a small if any profit… IF they didn’t know that going in then they are stupid.. and NOT many billionaires are stupid. They own a team to say “Look at me I own a hockey team!” then they put that son-inlaw he barely likes in some glorified position paying him mid to high 6 figures (because he doesn’t trust him enough to do anything in any company that REALLY makes him money) and gets to write off all kinds of expenses in taxes. Owning a hockey team is NOT owning a NFL franchise or MLB franchise… it never has and never will.

        Oh and if all these owners are losing SO MUCH money… why isn’t there fire sales on teams?? What established billionaire takes multimillion dollar losses for as many years as they say and keep that investment… answers pretty simple.. NONE! They aren’t losing all that much money if any except maybe a select few. Even the forbes article showed that operational losses were not all that bad except for a select few. Here’s an idea if your going to claim to be losing so much money.. just open your books so everyone (like the NHLPA) is in the know. But they sure aren’t in any hurry to do that. Here’s a little snip it of what I mean:

        “Beyond the dissonance between the owners’ desire to pay less and their continued demonstrated ability to pay more, there are hard numbers. In 2003-04, the last season before the only labor-erased season in the history of major North American pro sports, NHL teams paid $1.332 billion in player salaries, according to USA Today’s salary database. In 2011-12, NHL teams paid $1.699 billion in player salaries. Adjusting for inflation, salaries rose just over $84 million over the last eight years, an average of $2.8 million per team.”

        “While salaries are slightly higher than they were eight years ago, NHL revenues are not. In 2003-04, league revenues were $2.1 billion. In 2011-12, that figure reached $3.3 billion.”

        source: http://aol.sportingnews.com/nhl/story/2012-08-23/nhl-labor-talks-gary-bettman-lockout-sept-15-cba-player-salaries-zach-parise

        $1.2 Billion Revenue difference in revenue from ’03-’04 to ‘11’-‘12
        -$367 Million Salaries difference in salary from ’03-’04 to ‘11’-‘12
        =$833 Million Difference

        So if you just take the hard numbers, no inflation that’s a difference of $1.2 billion in revenue increase from ’03-’04 to ’11-’12. Teams are paying out $367M or $12.23M per team more in contracts over the same period of time. So that’s $833M to the plus side, divided by the 30 teams that’s roughly $27.76M more per team… so if owners are so broke… where is all that money going??? It’s not going to the players, so who??

  12. cspsrbums - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    Nice job owners take your ball and run if they don’t play by ur rules. F the owners and the NHL I would love nothing more then a new league started.

    • zetaone - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:36 PM

      They offer the players $100 million more for the “make whole” aspect, the players reject it and it’s the owners fault now?

  13. rpiotr01 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    If only there were a few numbers between 5 and 8! Then the two sides might compromise on a number somewhere BETWEEN the number that each side would like ideally. Alas, it’s not meant to be…

  14. ktboston - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:05 PM

    F**k you!!!

  15. screwston281 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:07 PM

    Sources tell me the sun will rise tomorrow morning.

  16. sampulls - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:13 PM

    I can’t believe how stupid tomnickle sounds.
    LoL
    Players livelihood.
    LoL

  17. voltron217 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:13 PM

    The fact that the owners gave a little and the players gave none shows how out of touch these players are. They don’t make the NHL a success, we the fans make it a success. The more money they get the less fans can afford to go.

  18. sampulls - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    I know guys who only played a few games in the NHL….one of them signed a 2 yr entry deal. Guess what….he doesn’t have to work anymore.

    • tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:24 PM

      If he doesn’t have to work, it isn’t because of the 2 year entry deal he signed.

  19. cspsrbums - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    Tomnickle is completely right let owner push them and 7 years later they’ll get pushed again tell owner pack sand and sell their teams

  20. cspsrbums - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    Zeta stone do you like your job ? If so what is the difference if they like their job what’s wrong with that. Maybe your boss should come and take part of your check its ok you like you job

  21. fortwaynekomets - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:39 PM

    THANK GOD I’ve got into the NFL this year, I never thought I’d be able to but I am watching football, and actually enjoying it and looking forward to the superbowl! I will def feel the no hockey here come playoff time, but that’s why I can watch College Hockey, ECHL hockey, and other minor pro hockey leagues. It’s all on AmericaOneSports Online streaming website!!! Thank me later!

    NHL… R.I.P.

  22. barkar942 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:45 PM

    Time for the union to disenfranchise, time for the owners to fold the NHL, create a new league called the North American Hockey League (NAHL); start a whole new league, tell players here is what the salary is, take it or leave it, and show the players that without ownership, there is no league!

  23. proudliberal85392 - Dec 6, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    Not looking good, blomfeld. My Yotes vs. your Kings might have to wait until next year…dammit!

    • blomfeld - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:00 PM

      Friend, it’s possibly never looked better ! What’s playing out here is a “premeditated and calculated plan” which at the end of the day is designed to do nothing more than add “net” worth for those with control and a vested interest. I can guarantee to you that our Battle of Interstate 10 will be re-commencing in January ! Please don’t ever let the collective “cowardice and fear” of the many who post here at PHT deter you, not even for a second ! :)

      *** Bonus video for all of the frightened sheep and pessimists ***

  24. cspsrbums - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    The NHL is a hobby to a lot of these owners ,but if the can make a few bucks at the same time great. How about the owners give a little the and have revenue sharing and then the players will be less reluctant to give back. Also why should the player help save the owners from their selves by a 5 year contract length the owners need to have some discipline and not offer up those long contracts and stop out bidding each other. If non of the owners offer a long term contract then the players won’t get one. Also do you really think these teams are losing money no, maybe a few but that would be fixed with revenue sharing like MLB they move money around in different business to show a loss because it is a hobby to most of them. The owners are weasels don’t let them fool you, that’s how they got where they are today.So the owners are not giving anything they are trying to strong arm the players if they are broke sell your team and get out

  25. tomnickle - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:06 PM

    Good night everyone,

    Maybe tomorrow those greedy, agreement averse players will concede and forfeit half of their salaries over the last ten years, agree to a limit of the time they can be under contract for, agree to submit to an involuntary placement of work place for ten years prior to having choice and and a significantly reduced amount of pay and escrow for this season.

  26. acieu - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:13 PM

    Is what the players are doing with regard to negotiations working for them? Are they getting the movement they want? If so keep doing it? If the soon to be five missed paychecks is worth the sacrifice more power to you. If a one or two season loss is worth the effort go for it and decertify. Looks likes the owners even the moderates are have answered that threshold question for their side. So now we settle in and we will watch the courts decide.

  27. fortwaynekomets - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    I just watched the video and Gary Bettman basically said everything BUT “the season is cancelled”. You can tell he is emotionally pissed off the players didn’t take what he offered. The NHL is NOT stupid though, look for them to continuing to “cancel” games all the way up until February, THEN they will announce it’s a wrap folks.

    However, Mike Milbury is right (and he’s not often) when he said that DON’T expect hockey next fall unless it is settled before the end of this season. This could potentially go on for 2+ years. The players are getting screwed, that’s a given. BUT they will have all that taken off the table if they don’t accept the offer NOW, and the NHL has already started pulling stuff off the table… Looks like the players might have missed out on the best deal they could’ve got? yikes.

  28. desal2ds - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    Stay strong NHLPA it’s time Bettman gets a taste of his own medicine. Looking like an Ahole. He and David Stern have ruined their sport. Coincidentally enough use to work together. Stern fines coaches for managing a team as they see fit i.e San Antonio. Bettman puts hockey teams in Atlanta and Phoenix. Both guys who have pussified their leagues

  29. blomfeld - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:39 PM

    STEADY AS SHE GOES …

    At this very moment 71 years ago in 1941, a powerful Japanese naval “strike” force was making “battle speed” towards the island of Oahu in preparation for the launch of Operation Hawaii. Then at approximately 0600 hours on the morning of December 7th, Nagumo’s carriers “turned into the wind” to launch the first attack wave and from there the rest is history.

    As a student and lover of history, I bring this up because the parallels to this so-called NHL impasse of today are almost stunning. Anyone with just a “decent” historical grasp, knows only too well that the Japanese were “goaded” into delivering the first blow, which in turn was part of a “preconceived” plan to rile the American public and thus bring the United States into the greater war. And so it is with Bettman today and this completely “fake and contrived” lockout. These people “want” what’s happening right now and they “want” you to believe that there exists a very real danger of you losing the game you love forever. Well total hogwash I say ! I for one am not fooled for a second by this phoney and dastardly charade, as I know only too well that Bettman and company are working according to “their” timetable and “theirs” alone. And when “they” decide the time is right, that’s when we’ll have hockey ! … which by the way, should be pretty soon now :)

  30. 8man - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:03 PM

    End the season now. Punch the punk union in it’s face and then ask, “So now what do you want to do to save next season and the careers that may be lost at the end of it?”

    It’s in too deep and gone too far. Get everything you want or just watch these putrid players careers wither and die. They’ll eventually plead for mercy or just disappear. And as for Donald Fehr….you just can’t say yes to this guy…ever…..ever…ever…

  31. id4joey - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    F ck D. Fehr pissed off Bettman. Tomorrow the axe falls on the league and just maybe on Fehr.

  32. sportsfan69 - Dec 6, 2012 at 11:05 PM

    As Colonel Hessler stated, “too many boys”. Blomfeld, put the Battle of the Bulge Panzerlied video on. If you could please.

    • blomfeld - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:33 AM

  33. fortwaynekomets - Dec 7, 2012 at 12:56 AM

    Pretty sure Blomfeld, I4joey, sportsfan69, and General Lee are all one person.

    That’s pretty sad. I’ve been reading the times the names post and it’s just as if someone if using 2 accounts, or in this case 4, or possibly even more. I’m a poet and didn’t even know it.

  34. rsimcox - Dec 7, 2012 at 4:53 AM

    The owners could counter. They could tell the players 7 year contracts etc… but since it’s part of a “package deal” then there has to be take-back in other areas… like no make whole at all. that would be 300 million gone in a poof. I always thought the make whole was stupid to begin with and maybe the owners are now thinking the same.

  35. tonyricemajorharris - Dec 7, 2012 at 6:56 AM

    Why should there be contract limits??? If the owners can’t control themselves that’s their problem. So the owners need protection from each other???

    • valoisvipers - Dec 7, 2012 at 11:09 AM

      Yes they need rules in place so that owner will not fall victim to each others GM’s that will do what ever they can to build a winner.

  36. augsburg12 - Dec 7, 2012 at 7:20 AM

    Well here we are again. Hello fans we’re closet this time, the best effort so far, a deal.. Fooled Ya Fooled Ya. See you next press conference where we will get your hopes up once again Only after this one we will cancel the season and we the hockey faithful can go puck ourselves

  37. csilojohnson - Dec 7, 2012 at 7:33 AM

    Thanks guys

  38. sportsfan69 - Dec 7, 2012 at 7:50 AM

    danke, Herr Blomfled.

    There stands the eighteen boys behind there Fehr.

  39. islanders1 - Dec 7, 2012 at 8:19 AM

    The NHL is taking from existing and future player contracts it is a matter of degree of take away. The players are give up huge concessions with the monetary package they have agreed to with the owners. So the NHLPA says OK we will accept the monetary concessions but we need changes to these three contracting provisions that are HUGE takeaways. Bettman response is to take his marbles and going home. They get up in front of the media and are throwing a fit because the NHLPA still wants to negotiate these three items. But we said we have to have these 3 concession for the 100 million in less takeaways and they want to negotiate them were taking our marbles and going home. The owner(s) signed these agreements and now are taking BIG chunks back. Bettsman’s spin that we are given them more is simply false they are taking a little less back that’s the facts. 10 year agreement with 8 year out yes it brings stability but the NHL also knows that if they sigh a 5 year deal the player will be in the position of power next agreement because there is no way the owners can lock the players out again in 5 years none but 8 maybe 10 yes. They also know it will add tremendous value to the worth of the teams and make expansion much easier. They could grandfather existing player contract terms and and negotiate a max contract length. They signed player to these agreements and it is all takeaways simple truth.

  40. klownboy - Dec 7, 2012 at 10:46 AM

    Screw you Gary Bettman and ownership for screwing the 2012-2013 NHL season. Here’s hoping the KHL bankrupts you clowns!
    http://theklowntimes.net/2012/09/16/owners-and-bettman-to-blame-for-nhl-lockout/

  41. matt8204 - Dec 7, 2012 at 10:06 PM

    They’re all a disgrace. Take this league and shove it up your asses. You don’t deserve any fan support.

  42. wsphloyd - Dec 8, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    Get your FIRE BETTMAN T-SHIRTS and more at

    http://www.cafepress.com/fbettman

    It’s the third lockout under Gary Bettman’s reign!!!! Time for him to go!!!

  43. bluesnut73 - Dec 10, 2012 at 4:17 PM

    HEY BUTTMAN GET YOUR HEAD OUT OF YOUR AZZ AND YOUR HANDS OUT OF EVERYONE’S POCKETS AND PULL OUT A PEN AND TRY TO MAKE SOMETHING HAPPEN . ALL THIS BOILS DOWN TO IS A BUNCH OF LAWYERS DESTROYING THE NHL TO MAKE YOU LOOK GOOD MAKE AN F=EFFORT YOU TOOL.

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