NHLPA President Trevor Linden's Column on the CBA
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09-13-2004, 10:13 AM
WHAT - ME WORRY?
Join Date: Jul 2004
Originally Posted by
Keep in mind that professional sports leagues are a cartel.
Is collusion actually illegal in a legalized cartel?
I would say that the owners could legally do this if they were smart enough.
I think it is illegal, but not because it is a cartel.
It would be illegal under employment laws. You can't arbitrarily limit a person's wages if there is a union involved (and most times even if there is no union invilved). If you have a union you have to negotiate collectively, or else what would be the point of having a union in the first place if an owner of a business could adjust wages willy-nilly?
Any concerted move by the owners to limit salaries that is not agreed to by collective bargaining would be collusion and is illegal. The owners would all have to act independently of each other for this to work. But if they did that, the union would point out that the owners were effectively colluding because they would be acting to impliment a salary structure that they tried to bargain and did not get. It would then be up to the owners to prove they were acting independently.
All in all, the owners would risk serious financial repercussion if they lost, not mention more union woes than they already have (if that's possible).
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