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11-12-2003, 10:54 PM
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Originally Posted by discostu
It appears that way, but keep in mind, we are still a long way from the expiration of the current CBA....I really like what the players have come up with....
I agree. Predictions of doom and gloom are waaaay premature. Everyone would like a CBA to be hammered out today, but Pronger is correct: come next summer, the pressure to negotiate will escalate exponentially. And it's funny how deals can get hammered out under the pressure of the clock.

I, too, like the framework of the NHLPA preliminary offer. but then again, I'm not an owner. :p That said, when all is said and done, I am a firm believer that an individual who invests in a team is entitled to generate every single cent of revenue out of it that he can. And that includes managing his payroll (players' salaries) to his benefit. Clearly, NHL ownership, as a whole, has done a poor job of that, in recent years particularly. Now will be their best chance to correct it (even if only temporarily).

To that end, here is a summary of the owner's counter-offer (with me representing them ):

- 10% rebate on all current salaries. (As opposed to the 5% offered by players.)

- "Matrix of revenue sharing" concept - don't have enough specifics in the article, but it seems as though this approach could serve as a de facto luxury tax. Or at least a "drag" on spending. It would certainly incent some teams to curtail spending (or at least give them a good excuse to do so), and it would promote a level of equitability league-wide. Not suggesting that NYR will be spending anywhere near the low amount of, say, Calgary at the bottom. But if the "matrix" has some teeth to it, it could be effective in promoting a limited re-distribution of wealth league-wide, while simultaneously allowing the big spenders to keep burning cash, as they wish (free market). Clearly, any "matrix" would need to address currency exchange and the huge US/Canadien taxation discrepancies, to "even out the playing field" somewhat for Canadien teams. (Why? For the good of the league, that's why.)

-The rollback of the entry level max salary is good, however, the owners should not agree to extension of the entry-level contract from the current three-year length to four years.

- No cap, and accordingly, no change on the age for unlimited free agency. Likewise, push back (make more restrictive) eligibility for RFA status. Could be as simple as delaying it a year or so for each player compared to the current arrangement. Also, status quo on league salary minimum.

That's a start. Get Goodenow on the phone, pronto!

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