Statement from Larry Tanenbaum (Leafs Owner) / Ron Burkle's (Penguins)
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12-10-2012, 09:46 AM
Join Date: Nov 2010
Originally Posted by
I think the real problem comes from the disconnect between Fehr and the players.
You put 6 billionaires / mega-millionaires (all of whom are extremely business savvy) in a room with 18 under-educated jocks, and I don't think you need an MBA to know who's going to win that negotiation.
The move to get the head honchos out of the room was a great play by the NHL. Gary Bettman isn't an better of a negotiator than Larry Tannenbaum or Ron Burkle.... Donald Fehr is a substantially better negotiator than Sidney Crosby or Ron Hainsey. From a labour relations standpoint, if you're running a more "normal" (say the auto workers) union who's in a work stoppage... are you really going to put assembly line workers in the room with the C-level execs?
The players hired Fehr becuase they wanted to get the best deal they could possibly get. If they were just interested in playing, Fehr either wouldn't have been hired, or been hired with a secret deadline of when they would agree to a deal. If Fehr has a deadline, I suspect that would've been when an 82 game season is still possible, or maybe when a season is still possible.
Matter of opinion, but I don't think the owners/players meeting was designed to get the players to agree to a deal without Fehr in the room. I think the meeting was designed to hear from the players themselves on what issues they would compromise on which would give the league some advantage in how to propose their next offer.
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