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Interesting Q&A Article with Bettman on nhlcbanews.com...

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06-29-2004, 12:55 PM
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Oilers Ent
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Interesting Q&A Article with Bettman on nhlcbanews.com...

Here's the link:

http://nhlcbanews.com/transcripts/be...aft062504.html

Thoughts?

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06-29-2004, 02:01 PM
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Bohologo
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Given the source, it's bound to reflect well on the league and less well on the PA. I did find this interesting: "The market for players' services in all professional sports is defined by Collective Bargaining. That's what the law says. That's the reality of it."
I didn't know there was a law governing pro sports that created a collective bargaining framework.

One thing that Bettman evokes is the Levitt report, which I would encourage everyone to read. It's fairly dry, but I don't think you can credibly discuss the current impasse without at least some familiarity with the gospels of the two factions. It's long and boring, but hey, it's going be a long and boring fall with no hockey. Link.</FONT>

To be fair, here is a critique of the report: "Every other company in the world wants to maximize revenue, and then account for cost, not understate revenues and overstate a single expense category, as the NHL does for public consumption (their actual books have still not been scrutinized in full by anyone, including Levitt)....[A]nd I hate to say it, but I come away believing Levitt has performed a conscious, if completely legitimate, sleight of hand, designed first, last, and always to support the NHL's claims, not test them." link</FONT>.


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06-29-2004, 11:00 PM
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hillbillypriest
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bohologo
Given the source, it's bound to reflect well on the league and less well on the PA. I did find this interesting: "The market for players' services in all professional sports is defined by Collective Bargaining. That's what the law says. That's the reality of it."
I didn't know there was a law governing pro sports that created a collective bargaining framework.
I don't think this is what he meant. Bettman is responding to the Goodenow proposition that the players will only accept a cba structure that is "market based".

Bettman is saying that the market structure in any sport is defined by the structure created by the parameters in the governing collective bargaining agreement. So if you you change the collective bargaining agreement, the nature of the "market" you create is different.

You are correct that there is no "law" that create a collective bargaining framework. However, there is an important (united states) legal principle in play here. That is that if you have a collective agreement, the anti-trust laws that would normally be presumed to apply don't apply. Over the years the US courts have devised a non-statutory exemption from the anti-trust laws for labour agreements. So once a collective bargaining agent like a PA signs onto a collective agreement, they are effectively waiving any right to be protected by the "market rules" that have been defined by anti-trust rulings over time that would apply if the NHL were to try to impose restrictive labour rules unilaterally.

So, Bettman is right on. The market in a collective agreement is what ever the parties to the agreement devise. Change the collective agreement, and the market will be completely different.

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06-30-2004, 06:38 AM
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Thanks HBP, that analysis is very helpful. I guess the NHL's labour market parameters are defined by the terms of the CBA, and in that light, it's easy to see why negotiations have become so contentious.

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