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08-31-2009, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Ernie View Post
I'd say it's rather unlikely.

The Hargrove / Lindros / Pink crowd seems to have the upper hand at the moment, but you know the adults are going to step in at some point. After the Saskin fiasco the hardliners were likely calling for that exact scenario but they ended up with Paul Kelly.

It's easy for Lindros and Hargrove to advocate another lockout - they've got absolutely nothing to lose.

The players aren't looking at a scenario where they can expect their salaries to go down under a new CBA. Indeed, I'd expect the league to be making more concessions rather than the other way around, with players potentially getting a chunk of relocation fees, expansion fees, etc. The league's biggest bargaining chip at this point seems to be the 2014 Olympics.

But I think the next CBA is going to be a fight amongst the owners themselves as much as it is between the league and the players. "Cost certainty" is proving to be anything but in many small markets, and I'd expect those teams to be fighting to increase revenue sharing as a matter of survival. These teams are also likely going to be against expansion as well, since it takes away markets that they could potentially be interested in moving to.
This we can agree on. Bettman managed to keep the ownership side from reaching this point during the lockout, but like you say, they are already there without any labor trouble now. It makes you wonder whether the "supermajority" Bettman got the owners to agree to last time around will actually work against him..

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