Originally Posted by MoreOrr
No one's been holding a gun to those billionaire owners' heads forcing them to make such contracts. Of course the players and their agents are going to be asking for as much as they can possibly get, but the final decision comes down to the guys signing the cheques. The only thing that's holds most of owners hostage is their own egos to out-compete each other at all costs; so much so that they have to create rules to restrict themselves to protect themselves from themselves; and still they look for loopholes to bypass their own rules in order to offer even more lucrative contracts to the players.
It's pathetic, IMO, that owners, powerful people in their own right, have to blame what are essentially their employees for supposedly forcing them to pay them too much. And then because the owners can't control themselves (oh collusion, blah, blah, blah; if something is bad for the League then it's bad for the League!), they want to alter the contents of established contracts in order to prevent further losses. The whole mess makes the idea of a "contract" laughable. Hey, I don't have much sympathy for the players, a great many earn a great deal; but I have even less sympathy for the owners.
The fact that apparently the owners have agreed to honor contracts at least for 2 more years (if I'm understanding correctly) is a good move by them; though I think they could/should make it 3 years. Now it's the players turn to accept NHL economic realities, and come down to meet the owners half way.
Yes, the owners are "forced" to sign such deals, and yes, it has to do with collusion, not to mention the 57% of hrr that goes to the players. Saying that they could just stop it is bs. All teams are bound by the same rules, players compare themselves to similar players, did you even read what I wrote?
You are completely ignoring the fact that people who work together to get a new CBA don't automatically have to share the same view about every matter. Of course teams will compete with each other, that's the whole point of the league. The teams work together on a matter they have to work together, and once that is done, each and every team is back to being on its own again. Your whole point makes no sense. Do the players who negotiate as one group all behave the same when hockey starts, no, they don't. They sign for different salaries, leave teams for more money and try to beat players who are on different teams. By your logic that shouldn't be the case.
The owners have exactly one way to fix any problem that comes up, through negotiating a better CBA. Beyond that, they are bound by the rules and what's going on around them. Teams don't exist in a vacuum, if rich teams pay more money to certain players, it influences every single team. They can't just let those players go without being hurt. As I said, and that's a fairly obvious point, a team that loses good players gets weaker. If they continue to lose their good players all the time, they have less success and thus far less revenue. If they have less revenue, they have even less money to keep the team at that level, much less improve it.
This whole point wasn't about who is to blame, it was a desription of what is actually happening. Creating some weird ideas about how owners should "just stop making those kind of deals" doesn't change anything about those facts I mentioned.
Beyond that, contracts were altered in the past. In fact, they were altered each and every year of the last CBA. In addition to that, the CBA specifically mentioned that all contracts would be subject to changes made in a new CBA. If you are oh so interested in people keeping to their word, why do you ignore this written contract the players negotiated?
Originally Posted by Tekneek
They want to sign players to contracts the teams cannot afford, with the hope that they can use collective bargaining to reduce the cost of the contract. That was why the Wild signed those guys to massive contracts (which I wish would be voided at this point, since it is all too obvious what they were up to). This is a case of management using collective bargaining to deal with their own inability to properly manage their business. Boo to them.
And the players negotiated huge bonuses that had to be paid out regardless of what happens for the very same reason, so what is your point?
To act as if only the owners tried to get the most out of upcoming collective bargaining is flat out wrong.