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Donald Fehr accepts NHLPA position

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Old
08-26-2010, 12:54 PM
  #26
walsy37
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Originally Posted by shortcat1 View Post
That's what I mean about MLB. Who do pretty well all baseball fans expect to see in the playoffs in October (or the World Series)? The Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies, etc.

If you aren't a fan of any of those 'rich' teams then, as soon as the first batter in the first inning of your favourite team's first game of the season goes to the plate, your team is effectively out of contention for any shot at the post season.

Talk about exciting!
To be fair - in MLB only 8 teams out of 30 make the playoffs and the NHL is double that.

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08-26-2010, 12:55 PM
  #27
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08-26-2010, 01:09 PM
  #28
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This will be interesting to watch.

When Fehr negotiated the baseball deal, players were underpaid compared to what the owners could generate in terms of revenues and profits. To his credit he took advantage of the situation.

The whole landscape is different now. Owners in all the major professional leagues have had a long time to evaluate the long term consequences of the various bargainning agreements. A lot of these owners are now losing significant amounts of money on their franchises and they won't want that continue. That worked for a while but there are a lot of billionaire owners who are now millionaires. In other words, anyone who thinks owners are in the game for tax write-offs is delusional.

There is also a chance that the majority of the players will realize that they haven't necessarily benefited from the last agreement. The majority of the benefits have accrued to the top three or four players on each team. Although the NHLPA has been referred to as a union, it hasn't improved the situation of a lot of players. Paying a greater percentage of revenues to the players won't help that group, it will simply mean more money for the elite players.

Hopefully the new agreement will be creative with some give and take on both sides. There is an opportunity for the two sides to get together and finally create an agreement that could be the model by which other agreements are measured.

While I would like to see it happen, I doubt that it will. You could call me a hopeful pessimist.

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08-26-2010, 01:41 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by kyne View Post
From an NHLPA and player agent perspective, he's an excellent choice.
I think he is a horrible choice for the NHLPA. The NHL owners have already shown that they can remain in the fold until the players cave. The only reason Fehr was successful in MLB contract negotioations is that he knew the owners would eventually kill and eat their own. If Fehr comes into a negotiation with claws out he is going to do nothing but entrench and polarize both sides, making getting to a middle ground and a face-saving resolution more difficult.

The NHLPA would have been better off hiring a bright up and coming, unknown labor negotiator to be the point man and conduct the negotiating. The players should remain behind the scenes. Their not so private internal dissent did not help their cause during the last negotiations.

I can't see how players agents will also be served by another lost season. Their commission on European (non-KHL) paying contracts can't amount to very much.

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08-26-2010, 02:23 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by walsy37 View Post
To be fair - in MLB only 8 teams out of 30 make the playoffs and the NHL is double that.

True enough.

The only thing I can add to that is which teams are usually part of that group of eight. You can probably list at least half of them right off the bat.

Yes, there are occasional years when some of these same eight teams don't make the playoffs but, honestly, it's still only an occasional situation when they don't make it.

Bottom line, if not a sport killer, it's surely a sport crippler.

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08-26-2010, 03:12 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by 24Cups View Post
I think he is a horrible choice for the NHLPA. The NHL owners have already shown that they can remain in the fold until the players cave. The only reason Fehr was successful in MLB contract negotioations is that he knew the owners would eventually kill and eat their own. If Fehr comes into a negotiation with claws out he is going to do nothing but entrench and polarize both sides, making getting to a middle ground and a face-saving resolution more difficult.

The NHLPA would have been better off hiring a bright up and coming, unknown labor negotiator to be the point man and conduct the negotiating. The players should remain behind the scenes. Their not so private internal dissent did not help their cause during the last negotiations.

I can't see how players agents will also be served by another lost season. Their commission on European (non-KHL) paying contracts can't amount to very much.
Pretty sound reasoning and a fair assessment. On the other hand, I'm thinking that the one reason the NHLPA might have hired Fehr is in anticipation of a possible removal of the cap as an initial negotiating position with perhaps a soft cap as a take it or leave it proposition. The older middle-of-the-pack players such as Moore, Torres, etc...who fill out the bulk of any roster can't be too happy about getting low balled or losing their job to entry level players due to existing cap constraints.

I think player agents have everything to gain should Fehr attempt a return to "the good old days" when journeymen like Martin Lapointe made big money. At worse, some, if not most, of their clients can go to Europe during a strike as they did last time. With the KHL paying big bucks now, there is a possible WHA type scenario.

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Old
08-26-2010, 03:18 PM
  #32
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I will let my user name speak for what I think of this announcement.

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08-26-2010, 06:37 PM
  #33
Boris Le Tigre
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Originally Posted by Whitesnake View Post
...

Though again....unless the goal is to once and for all determine which markets deserve to survive or not......and then replace them by others.
that never occurred to me... pretty good point and the Expos fate, post-Fehr, is an example that it's at least relevant.

It's in the players best interest to have the teams in the best possible market situations.

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Old
08-26-2010, 07:53 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by shortcat1 View Post
They certainly were one of the very best teams that year.

I was extremely disappointed at the time. I even thought that it might have been some sort of 'collusion' by the other teams so as to prevent another (a third in a row) World Series championship by a Canadian baseball team.

I still tend to think that way - not as hard but the feeling is still there. Would the owners have gone that way if the Yankees or one of the top teams were in the same position as the Expos that year...? I don't know. But, being the Yankees (Bosox, etc.), the pressure to settle with the players association might have been much greater.

In the end, it's all speculation.
I had the same feeling then. I was stark raving mad when they called the season over. I was even more pissed when all our players left. Would winning the WS enable us to keep those players? I don't know. But the lockout was quite a coincidence, and add Selig's moves against the S'pos over the years, and you know something was fishy.

Still, the Yanks were starting to look a lot better in those years. They were very close to start their 90's championships run. They probably had the second best team behind our S'pos in 94, so I don't think your argument stands. People were actually buzzing about a possible Montreal/New York world series.

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08-27-2010, 10:39 AM
  #35
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Fehr is not good news, but at least the hockey world now has someone to stand up to Bettman.

Drawing parallels between hockey and baseball is difficult. There season is much longer, stadiums much bigger and tv contracts more lucrative.

Prior to 94 there were several instances of collusion and Fehr had a mandate from the players to be hard line. Lets not forget that those same players ordered Fehr to offer a return to play at the beginning of the next season temporarily under the former CBA.

NHL players do not have a large list of gripes. The biggest issues I see are the Kovalchuk contract, arbitration and licensing fees. If the NHL wants to keep the cap then major concessions are going to need to happen. Making arbitration binding seems fair, the fact that the team can just walk away when they lose makes arbitration a joke. Teams make millions of dollars in merchandise sales, players need a bigger cut of that.

Fehr can't just walk in and nuke the cap, he needs a mandate from membership to do so and I think the majority of players realize that the cap is responsible for parity.

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Old
08-27-2010, 11:00 AM
  #36
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