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09-05-2012, 12:17 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: New York
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Pierre Lebrun

It’s clear the fundamental impasse here is that the league/owners want the players to pay back off the top, while the players at this point are only ready to slow down their salary growth moving forward. The league’s last proposal, which would drop players' share from 57 percent of the pie to 46 percent, at least according to the current parameters, would mean big-time escrow payments for the players. The players’ proposal keeps all the present money/salary in the coffers for their side, but promises future stagnation. It’s certainly not enough from the league’s point of view. But there’s a deal to be done here. The fact that NHLPA head Donald Fehr chose to stay within the current system in his first offer was a positive sign in terms of finding common ground. He’s far away from what the league wants, but at least the salary-cap system wasn’t blown up in the NHLPA proposal. To me, the sweet spot is obvious: The league has to come down softer on the entry point of the new CBA, allow the players more breathing room in the transition phase and don’t bend them backward in the first year with massive escrow payments. In other words, I would offer to start this season with a salary cap in the mid-60s, keep the current way of calculating hockey-related revenue, but then phase in lower shares for the players (thus lower cap numbers) in future years. Somewhere, there’s middle ground between where the NHL and NHLPA currently stand. There’s no reason for this thing to go past October, as long as both sides are committed to making a deal.

$64.3M was the upper limit in 11-12. Paul Kelly was on a podcast last night. He said the cap for 12-13 would be a little higher than the cap number in 13-14. Gives team a full season to transition into a lower cap. That doesn't help the Rangers with the multiple contracts up in 13 and 14.

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