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radical idea to solve CBA and would it help the Bruins?

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01-30-2004, 07:56 PM
  #1
Michael Karlstrom II
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radical idea to solve CBA and would it help the Bruins?

I sort of have wondered about this idea for improving the game the last few years but trying to come up with line combinations for the Bruins that work the other night, I suddenly thought to myself that forget fixing the game, the way to see the Bruin's succeed is to impliment my idea into the next CBA.

Basically the idea is simply to go with 4 skaters instead of 5 for regulation even strength play.

People say the ice surface is too small... taking a man off of the ice would solve this. It shouldn't effect the corner play and collisions we all like as we've all seen that current 4-on-4 has alot of mucking in it still.

going to 4 guys on the ice at once could elliminate up to 4 paychecks if teams stay with 4 lines but do to needing to do some extra skating I think maybe teams might need to go to 5 lines or at least carry one extra forward and maybe an extra dman/forward type in case of injuries whatever during the course of the game.

Where this is good for the Bruins is that I think we currently have tandems instead of lines in the mix...

imagine our top 'line' goes out for their shift

Thornton/Murray... big fast uncheckable other big men don't skate as well as these two while smaller players can't handle the size.

we then throw Samsonov/Bergeron over the boards... smaller guys but fast and smart and I think they read each other well from what I have seen of them.

Rolston/Axelsson really have chemistry and they go out to take the checking role on the team while having the ability with Rolston's speed and breakaway ability to really counter strike against defensively weak first line opponents.

Lapointe/Knuble can then go out and grind out against the othe team's muckers and I think our better than most other teams 7/8 muckers

Green would be around for my 5th pair to help with faceoffs I guess and we'd prob need to dress a HW but wouldn't it be nice not to elliminate 60-90 NHL jobs of guys who should be in the AHL and see more open ice for the likes of Thornton/Samsonov to go out and do their things? A fourth line of Lapointe/Knuble is alot better for my money than one of Zamuner/Donato/MacDonald

Ellimination a couple roster spots from each team would save the league over a million dollars per team and having guys play 4th line duty instead of the 1st/2nd that shallow teams currently need them to play should help the arugments at arbitration hearings to keep the contracts down for guys like Lapointe and Knuble.

I know that the NHLPA won't like to see job cuts but if its a choice between watching bubble AHL/NHL callup guys become strictly AHL players and having third line type 6-8 year NHL vets being forced to take 50% paycuts to find the savings needed to make the next CBA work, I think that this idea of mine has a chance to fly.

It would need to be very seriously argued but I think if it did go into play it would help our current team compete more legitimately as I dont think anyone has a better/more well rounded top 16 skaters then us once the fourth line stuff gets elliminated from consideration.

 
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01-30-2004, 08:07 PM
  #2
erfus
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There's absolutely, positively no way in heck that the NHLPA signs to a deal that sees 20% of its members unemployed.

That, and going to 4 on 4 represents a gigantic change in the sport, the likes of which it hasn't seen (ever?). IMO, there's just no need to go to 4 on 4. Enforcement of the rules as they are written would speed up the game and create space. Eliminate hooking (a penalty), holding (a penalty), slashing (a penalty), and interference (a penalty) and you get something close to the sport as it should be played.

I honestly don't care whether or not it would help the Bs. Maybe it would. Heck, the Rangers could be a contender if we went to one on one. Jagr and Kovalev would be tough to stop.

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01-30-2004, 08:25 PM
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Michael Karlstrom II
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Originally Posted by erfus
There's absolutely, positively no way in heck that the NHLPA signs to a deal that sees 20% of its members unemployed.

That, and going to 4 on 4 represents a gigantic change in the sport, the likes of which it hasn't seen (ever?). IMO, there's just no need to go to 4 on 4. Enforcement of the rules as they are written would speed up the game and create space. Eliminate hooking (a penalty), holding (a penalty), slashing (a penalty), and interference (a penalty) and you get something close to the sport as it should be played.

I honestly don't care whether or not it would help the Bs. Maybe it would. Heck, the Rangers could be a contender if we went to one on one. Jagr and Kovalev would be tough to stop.

I guess my thinking is I hate to see the watered down way the league plays its games these days with each team employing a handful of guys who we all know would have had no chance to see action 20 years ago in the days of the 21 team league.

I know that league was watered down compared to the origional 6 too and that the NHL wants market coverage so elliminating teams isn't going to happen anytime soon but push is going to come to shove soon and cost controls will be put into the NHL CBA.

Baseball seriously talked about contraction this past couple seasons and that would result in job loses too. One franchise would result in better than 3% of jobs lost and one less employer potentially bidding salaries up.

I sort of think we are seeing an approaching armegedden where some markets are simply not going to be able to support the teams they currently have do to fan base apathy but where do these teams move too when they have to move?

Hamilton, Saskatoon, Quebec City, and Winnipeg just don't have the local economies to support 30-35 million dollar payrolls for their profesional sports teams.

One way or the other costs are going to have to get reduced or franchises are going to have to be folded and jobs will be lost.

I am not saying that my proposal would go over easily but come push to shove it might be the least distasteful option to the players if the guys losing jobs are going to be the clutching and grabbing no talent 4th line AHLers freeing up ice surface for the Joe Thornton's and Bret Hulls to go do their thing exciting fans again and refilling the empty arenas around the NHL to save the game.

Yes going to 4-on-4 would be a radical change but who is to say it would make the game worst? The current on ice product is drawing flies for tv ratings in the US and driving fans out of the seats even in tradtional strong hockey markets like Chicago and Boston.

I'd prob be in favor of putting a 4-4 game into a test system like the AHL first before I brought it into the NHL but if someone told me tomorrow that all games were going 4-4 I'd at least look at the results objectively before I dismissed the idea out of hand.

As for ref's calling the game and fixing it that way... I have never seen officials making calls where the fans were happy. Fans are simply far too biased to ever feel that their team gets the fair share of the calls when officials are blowing the whistle... usually fans will comment that the refs are trying to control the game and demand that the players be allowed to play the game and will complain why was a call made that 'cheaply' at that point of the game [if the call is against your team]

I talk to dozens of people about sports alot and not a one of them has ever been happy to see a game with alot of penalty calls in it even though every one of them tells me theoletically they want games officiated properly... its one of those things we all think we'd like but don't when it really happens.

 
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01-30-2004, 08:53 PM
  #4
erfus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Karlstrom II
I guess my thinking is I hate to see the watered down way the league plays its games these days with each team employing a handful of guys who we all know would have had no chance to see action 20 years ago in the days of the 21 team league.
To be fair, the talent pool is broader than it used to be w/ the opening of Eastern Europe, but I think I agree in general with your point.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Karlstrom II
Baseball seriously talked about contraction this past couple seasons and that would result in job loses too. One franchise would result in better than 3% of jobs lost and one less employer potentially bidding salaries up.
I disagree that contraction was ever a serious alternative for baseball. Sort of off topic, but referencing something that was born by Bud Selig doesn't further your point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Karlstrom II
I am not saying that my proposal would go over easily but come push to shove it might be the least distasteful option to the players if the guys losing jobs are going to be the clutching and grabbing no talent 4th line AHLers freeing up ice surface for the Joe Thornton's and Bret Hulls to go do their thing exciting fans again and refilling the empty arenas around the NHL to save the game.
Those 4th line AHLers that make the NHL are part of the union too. If the NHLPA had to pick an 20% slash in salaries or a 20% reduction in its workforce, which do you think would get the vote?? I don't think Thornton gets 2 votes just because he's twice the player of Craig MacDonald.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Karlstrom II
Yes going to 4-on-4 would be a radical change but who is to say it would make the game worst? ...I'd at least look at the results objectively before I dismissed the idea out of hand.
Sorry for the edit, let me know if you think I'm misrepresenting you there.

Anyway, I think it's too radical of a change and would fundamentally alter the sport of hockey in the way its played, viewed, coached, etc. Am I dismissing it out of hand? I guess you could make that argument. I just don't think it's necessary...see below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Karlstrom II
As for ref's calling the game and fixing it that way... I have never seen officials making calls where the fans were happy. Fans are simply far too biased to ever feel that their team gets the fair share of the calls when officials are blowing the whistle... usually fans will comment that the refs are trying to control the game and demand that the players be allowed to play the game and will complain why was a call made that 'cheaply' at that point of the game [if the call is against your team]

I talk to dozens of people about sports alot and not a one of them has ever been happy to see a game with alot of penalty calls in it even though every one of them tells me theoletically they want games officiated properly... its one of those things we all think we'd like but don't when it really happens.
Refs broke the game, they should fix it. That's overly simplistic, but this EXACT sentiment of yours is why the game is so boring right now. The "let the boys" play phenomenon let those quick tugs, subtle slashes, and those "I'll just step in front of you, pardon me" interference calls disappear. Are the fans happier now?? You're not, I'm not. If it takes a year of 30 PP attempts a game to get back to the up and down, speed and skill game that was happening 15 years ago, I'd happily accept that.

If the only way to fix the sport is to fundamentally alter it, then maybe it's too late to revive it.

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01-30-2004, 09:03 PM
  #5
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It would make for a better game--as would skating on Olympic-sized surfaces--but the NHLPA would never go for it.

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01-30-2004, 09:24 PM
  #6
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That, and going to 4 on 4 represents a gigantic change in the sport, the likes of which it hasn't seen (ever?).


Actually way back 1900-1920's there were 6 skaters and a goalie. The sixth man was called a rover. They are gone now. I wonder if they play in the AHL?

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01-31-2004, 08:02 AM
  #7
Strafer
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Here's another idea, the NHL governors ought to fess up to the greed that they've displayed in the last quarter century, and admit that hockey in the South and in cities like Columbus make no sense. They've planted teams wherever they find millionaires foolish enough to slap $$$$ down on their boardroom tables. Get rid of the teams that don't have a respectable showing in attendance. Even with the larger talent pool, (Russian players aren't as motivated as they were when there was a threat of being sent to Siberia) most players today look as though they came out of the same hockey mill-boring! Really, is there any common sense involved in what the NHL has done with their expansion in the last 20 years or so? I'd like to see the NHL trim done to 24 teams, shorten the amount of games per season, have stricter accountability of officiating, no instigator penalty for the first man who drops his gloves, automatic icing calls (even during penalties) , a two minute delay of game penalty for four icings in a period and something needs to be done to eliminate the trapping systems that coaches implement, they're playing (not to lose) instead of (to win). So between cutting down the amount of teams, and a strict CBA, maybe the NHL can save itself from a monetary disaster in the coming years, and it's starting to look like they're starting to understand what they need to do to get this ship back on course. Since we're on the subject, suspend or even expell for a season players who are known to take out knees and suspend players who make it a habit of diving as if they've been bitten in the ankle by a Pit Bull.


Last edited by Strafer: 01-31-2004 at 08:07 AM.
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