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11-14-2012, 11:03 PM
Langdon Alger*
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 1,090
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Originally Posted by billybudd View Post
Yep. In February 2005 eklund expressed similar optimism on his, I think blogspot page, then reported a deal had been reached. This was picked up by several media outlets.

The season was canceled later that night. This event is actually what made this guy "famous."

In other words, my guess is he thinks doing the same thing again will bring more notoriety,
I doubt it. The mainstream media and vast majority of hockey fans know Eklund's a phony, and I think Eklund knows that they know he's a phony. That's why he isn't purporting to have any inside knowledge of these talks.

I suspect Eklund thinks we'll have a season for the same reason I do: He doesn't buy into the characterization of Donald Fehr as this menace from another sport who doesn't care about how much harm he brings to the game and its players. I was an Expos fan, so I'm no great fan of his either, but the fact is that he represents the players and is doing what he thinks will get his charges the best deal. I think he also knows Bettman will come out with his best offer just before the drop-dead point, since that's basically what he did in 2004-05.

What Fehr doesn't want to do, however, is let that drop-dead point pass and cost his players a full season. Remember how the last lockout ended? The players couldn't afford to keep missing paychecks into the 2005-06 season, so they essentially caved to the large demands the NHL had, such as the salary cap and rollbacks. That happened even though everyone knew for YEARS beforehand that the labour situation was dire; that there would be a lengthy lockout that could wipe out a season or more; and that the players would have to be prepared to sign in lesser leagues for lesser pay or go without getting paid for a while. This year's labour stoppage, on the other hand, was supposed to be a short one at worst. How well-prepared do you think the players are to sit out a full season this time?

Simply put: They're not.

The vast majority of the players can't afford to go a year without a paycheck, and while they're buying into Fehr's wait-it-out approach in public, I will bet you dollars to donuts they're putting a lot of pressure on him to salvage this season, at least in part. Combine that with the fact that the owners clearly don't want to wipe out another season - as evidenced by the fact they've budged on their original demands so quickly - and I think there's no way the two sides let this season die, posturing or no posturing.

Langdon Alger* is offline