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09-16-2004, 09:42 PM
David A. Rainer
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Originally Posted by me2
Post lockout-CBA disolving-NLPHA disolving. Would these be legal

1) Franchisor to require the franchisees to meet criteria to enter a competition (payroll under $40m)? McDonalds might have criteria that certain uniforms must be met, certain signage. The teams can sign as many players as they like, for as much as they want to spend on them. That seems like a reasonable thing for a franchisor-franchisee relationship.

2) same as above except that if the spend too much they get put into a different comp.

3) teams hiring hockey players from a 3rd party labour company. Teams pay an amount to this company, say $31m, which them agrees to provide them with some hockey talent. The same way one might rent auditors or accountants from KPMG.
Uniforms? Yes. Signage? Yes. Wages? An emphatic NO. Uniforms and signage do not affect competition, in this case competition in the labor market, so a franchisor can stipulate this all it wants in the franchise agreement. Stipulating a given wage in the franchise agreement reduces the level of competition in the labor market (basically, when every franchise offers the same wage, or offers a wage up to a certain level, the competition in the labor market is reduced because there is an artificial restriction on the wages). This is absolutely and without a doubt a violation of the Sherman Anti-trust Act. You and I can think of all kinds of different ways of forming agreements to provide a single mandated wage to the players, but every agreement you can think of, as long as it is done without a CBA and involved multiple legal entities is without a doubt going to be illegal under the Sherman Act.

Providing guidelines for the use of uniforms and signs might seem no different than providing guidelines for the payment of wages, but legally, it most certainly is different.

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