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01-04-2013, 11:45 AM
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OK, I found what I was looking for:

1.5 Duration of the CBA
When does the CBA expire?
- From Section 3.1 of the CBA:
-- 6/21/10: NHLPA votes to extend CBA to 9/15/12.
-- The agreement runs until September 15, 2011, after which it will automatically extend year-to-year unless either the NHL or NHLPA elect to cancel.
If either side chooses to cancel the CBA, notice must be given at least 120 days before the Sep 15th auto-renewal date [May 18th].
- The NHLPA has two special options that supersede the above agreement terms:
-- The NHLPA had the option to terminate the CBA on Sep 15th, 2009 with 120 days notice. This option was not exercised.
-- The NHLPA has the option to extend the CBA an additional year till Sep 15th, 2012 with 120 days notice prior to Sep 15, 2011. Option exercised.

I read this the following way:
1) The prior CBA automatically renews unless either party opts out. They have to do so on or before May 18.
2) In 2012, the players did not 'opt out' so that means they were willing to play under the old CBA. I do not mean OLD CBA RULES, even if the CBA were expired. I mean, old CBA.
3) Had the season been played under the old CBA (auto renewed), the players would not have had strike rights. So, even if there was a 'negotiate while playing' thing happening, the players could not strike right before the playoffs started. And, if they had, they would have cost themselves 57% of HRR from the playoff income.
4) The owners did not want to renew, because they feel their franchises need something different. So, they cancelled the old CBA. Or, ended it.
5) Now, there is no CBA. To play at all at this point requires an agreement about salaries, division of HRR, etc. In other words, all that had to be negotiated. If there could be a one season negotiation (and I doubt that), the owners would never have allowed strike rights to the players.
6) Since there is no CBA, everything has to be negotiated anyway. So, we are right back to the present situation.

In short, under no circumstances would Fehr ever have been able to hold a "Strike right before playoffs card."

The union's best move without a lockout would be forever delay, because without a lockout, the old CBA would still have been in effect. And, it was more favorable to the players than anything that might come out of the current negotiations.

MNNumbers is offline