NHL Announces a New CBA Proposal, Calls for 50-50 SplitPosted: 16/10/2012
Sorry we’ve been dead to the world over the last two weeks. The good news is that I (Andrew) just finished my last ever set of undergraduate midterms. And to that extent, I know that Mike is really busy being an adult, and also just doesn’t even want to talk about the lockout. I really don’t blame him.
Anyway the big story of the day is that the Owners have come back with a new CBA proposal, the first actual proposal since before the lockout began. The lockout began more than a month ago. As the title of this post says the league’s new proposal calls for an even 50-50 split. On its surface that sounds really good.
So that’s the good part, but before I say anything else, please read this post from Pensblog: WHY THE NHLPA WILL LIKELY REJECT THIS OFFER & THE LOCKOUT WILL CONTINUE. Did you read it? Did you? Okay this is where the “more” button goes, see more after that.
So what did we learn from that Pensblog post? Well the headline is “New CBA calls for 50-50 Share” there’s no doubt about that. And that means that everyone is going to be jumping for joy that we might actually have a possibility of seeing hockey sooner than later. But the rest of the proposal is straight-up rubbish. There are no meaningful concessions beyond the cap number, and if you’ve read anything I’ve ever written, linked to, or anything that everyone has ever written, you would know that the cap number isn’t the biggest issue for the players.
Far more important to the players is maintaining the status quo when it comes to contract lengths, maintaining UFA and RFA contracts, and help the league to become more and more sustainable. That means that this is far from the perfect offer.
The worst part is that this is probably the Owners’ best possible offer. I don’t think that anyone, either the PA or us as fans should expect things to ever get better from the Owners. But that doesn’t mean that this is proof positive of a permanent lockout for the entire season.
Despite all of that, there is a lot to enjoy about this offer. Even if the PA is unwilling to accept this specific offer, you have to assume that this could be the basis for further negotiations and perhaps we could be looking at a real resolution to this debate before too long. As RickCity said, the PA is going to have to be incredibly intelligent and conciliatory when it comes to their reaction to it. And already it seems like the Players are cautiously optimistic that this may lead to some real, meaningful communications.
Further, even a 50-50 sharing plan will ultimately cost $200 million worth of contract money to the players. That’s a lot of guys who are going to be moving out of the NHL on a permanent basis. Apparently, this is what the Players are going to ask to negotiate when they have a phone conference tomorrow. I think if the two sides can work out these grievances hockey really can happen sometime this year.
Tomorrow the two sides are going to have a phone conference call. Thursday they’re planning to meet face to face.