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12-20-2012, 04:41 PM
Trevor Forever
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Originally Posted by tantalum View Post
Really, the way the last negotiations went down were their own fault. They refused to acknowledge the situation the league was in and sit down and negotiation. They allowed Goodenow to put forth a strategy that they ultimately didn't agree with and cost them a season. When they finally sat down and negotiated (Linden and Saskin) they negotiated a strong deal for themselves under the framework the league was happy with. That was what Kelly wanted to continue to do...maximize the money for the players under a system the league was happy with. Avoid costing the players millions.

The league was never out to "crush" the union last time either IMO (I don't disagree that in the end it can and likely did become personal and that right now the same thing is happening but at the start it wasn't). They were out to make a fair deal based on current economic conditions. Bob MacKenzie said it best the other day on the have two difference philosophies (and I'm paraphrasing). The League like most businesses are trying to make a budget based on the here and now. They are starting with a pie and dividing it up. What that division looked like last time has no bearing on what it looks like this time. The players on the other hand can only seem to look at the differences between the two pies. As a result we have the standoff we have. One is a strategy based on business practice and the other based on emotion. The problem is that the players turfed the guy who could approach it as a business in favor of the guy who fans the flames of the passion.

In the end it ought to come down to this for each individual players "is what the league offered by and large fair?" And honestly, I have no idea how they answer no.
And by how they got rid of Kelly you get an idea of how emotional they already were three years ago. They didn't see him as the guy tough enough to negotiate in their best interest. They felt he was too close with the league. And that sentiment only grew bigger and stronger, especially after they found their leader, who said the right things at the right time through those years leading up to these negotiations.

I also agree, it will come down to each individual player's decision. And maybe that's why the last offer by the league has never been put to a full vote. Maybe Fehr had a hunch the players would have accepted that deal.

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