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09-16-2004, 02:27 PM
David A. Rainer
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Originally Posted by Tom_Benjamin
If you want to believe in this Fantasy Island garbage, feel free. It's illegal. The NHL cuts a deal with the NHLPA or the players decertify and the NHL has to operate like 30 separate businesses and the players can work for any of the businesses they want.
Well, let me chime in here. If the negotiations hit what is called "impasse" - neither side is willing to budge on their demands and negotiations cease - the NHL has the right to implement what is called "last / best". A "last / best" is the last or best offer made to the players' union. The NHL can unilaterally implement this last or best CBA and begin to hire replacement players.

What you were referring too (and correctly, I might add) is that the NHL cannot just implement their own restrictions in a currently active CBA, nor their own restrictions on competition without a CBA - these two circumstances require collective bargaining. But when a business is in between CBAs and negotiations with the certified union break down, the business is allowed to implement their own CBA - but this is ONLY if there is an impasse. Basically, it is saying that the business is trying, in good faith, to collectively bargain but labor will not listen, so the business is permitted to unilaterally take the next step in hopes of bringing the certified union back to the negotiating table.

So, if we reach impasse, the NHL can kick out the players, implement their own CBA (with the $31M salary cap) and hire new replacement players. It's just another aspect of labor law that will circumvent the restrictions of anti-trust law.

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Last edited by David A. Rainer: 09-16-2004 at 02:34 PM.
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