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11-12-2012, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by DAChampion View Post
Actually it does. They are forced to match. You can't send a fish to fight against sharks.

Fehr has a superior track record in baseball. One post-season was lost, but since then the league has had labour peace for 18 years, so overall the labour peace is very high.

Everybody is winning. The owners have record profits. The players have record salaries. The fans are also getting parity: 7 teams have won the world-series in the past 10 years, with three teams winning twice (Boston, San Franscisco and St-Louis), which cannot remotely be argued to be the three biggest markets. St-Louis is actually under 3 million people.

I like how Fehr is handling this lockout. Let's look at his successes:
- He's demanding no rollbacks of player salaries: this will build trust and set up a positive precedent. You won't see an orgy of spending when the next CBA expires like the opportunistic Craig Leipold engaged in this summer -- note that Craig Leipold is in the NHL's executive committee and thus is more "in the know" than nearly all others, including every agent and player. Gaming CBA changes, and using insider knowledge, should not be part of any team-building model.
- He's demanding that a decreased player share be coupled with increased revenue sharing, and has even suggested that non-player spending (e.g. scouting, drafting) be capped. If this is implemented, it will lead to a more viable business model for the NHL, and reduce the odds we have Bettman's fourth lockout in 2018.

You can call him a dick all you want, but the bottom line is that Fehr's strategy means a legitimate, viable business for the NHL.

The converse is not true of Bettman. He's not the one proposing revenue sharing. He's not the one saying contracts be honoured. A few years back he put the NHL on the Versus network, which was horrible for the game's popularity in the USA. I've had a lot of people tell me that they would watch hockey, but could not, because they did not have Versus.
You can spin it anyway you like. It does not change the reality that attendance in baseball is stagnant and not growing. Attendance in baseball was growing yearly prior to Fehr and his alienation of MLB baseball fans.

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