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12-11-2012, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Fugu View Post
I think what you're doing is analyzing the CBA after 7 yrs of operations under very high revenue growth, but also very disparate revenue growth. Had it gone a different way (low growth and/or growth in the smaller markets), the dynamic would have been different. (This was an area, in retrospect, where you can see the league didn't do any scenario modeling.)

I believe the league got exactly what they wanted in the last CBA, but every time you do one thing, you create an opportunity for unintended consequences to seep into the process.

For example, Jacobs/Bruins had left themselves all sorts of space going into that lockout because they believed that the market would be flooded with available players. I remember the media touting how at the outset, you'd see salaries fall rapidly due to high supply. They kind of forgot that supply and demand, in general, is a two-headed monster. It wouldn't be the elite players that were flushed out, and furthermore, for every player a team released or had unsigned, there was still a fixed number of roster spots. The guys who were pushed out were much older vets, and they tended to be overpriced relative to the new economics. You also had the inflationary aspect in the sense that a fixed amount HAD to be spent, whether teams wanted to pay that amount or not.

Three things 'conspired' to create cap circumvention: shortage of available talent, salary averaging, and no restriction on contract term. This was a mathematical puzzle. So were the architects of that system so shortsighted that they didn't see it coming--- or, did some of them see it and hope to exploit it (and I'm looking at the big market teams)?

Neither answer looks good on the NHL.

Finally, Bettman was on record defending the cap range system as an absolute requirement to gain both cost certainty and the much vaunted parity. He probably knew it wouldn't sit well with the bigger market teams if the smaller markets were simply allowed to pocket the difference. You have to believe that parity was a goal, and if you do believe that, then you cannot argue that the NHL didn't design the cap range system to accompany linkage.
To the first bolded part, yes, most definitely I am. And again my question was: How is it possible that none of these consequences were anticipated. To which I think you answered and then summarized the essence of the answer with the second bolded part.

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