NHL Lockout XXVIII: Don't worry about the lockout. Let me worry about blank.
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12-13-2012, 05:17 PM
Join Date: May 2012
Originally Posted by
Here's my thinking about this stalemate.
The players - collectively - unarguably have more to lose at this point. However, Gary Bettman has more to lose - personally - than Donald Fehr does. At this point, Fehr is essentially putting Bettman to a simple test: is he [Bettman] willing to cancel a season over the outstanding issues? I will say this much: if Gary Bettman
cancel the season, he will lose the PR war and he will lose his job. No commissioner will get a pass for canceling a season (his second in 8 years) over contract lengths. Imagine Bettman trying to justify
in a press conference.
With that said, this tactic on behalf of Fehr requires a lot of cojones. If - for whatever reason - Bettman calls the bluff, then the players will lose a year of salary fighting for issues that are of very little consequence. As a fan, I am insulted by Fehr's tactics. With that said, at this juncture I feel like I have been abused by the league so many times that I'm "numbed"...the fact that the players are holding me hostage this time doesn't anger me as much as it might have in the past.
Frankly, at this juncture, I look forward to them getting the game back on the ice (an inevitability) so that I can watch the games, but I will derive a sick satisfaction from not renewing my Center Ice subscription, not buying merchandise and not going to games, but rather watching games on my computer (streaming on websites that shall not be named).
I think Bettman is more likely to lose his job if the NHL caves than if he cancels the season. Bettman already looks bad because he has increased the last offer 2 or 3 times, if he caves now how can anyone see him as anything but weak? The owners want a tiger not a paper tiger.
The NHL has already offered a better deal than the NBA and NFL. They have already given too much.
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