For instance, from the time the NHL made a proposal in November that would have seen a full 82-game schedule played, the league’s scheduling guru Steve Hatze Petros has been constantly working on truncated schedules based on the moving target of a potential start date.
Regardless of when a season might start, a source told ESPN.com Sunday that none of the scheduling models at this stage involve games outside of the conferences. During the 48-game lockout-shortened 1995 season, teams likewise played only teams in their conference.
As for on-ice officials, who are among the forgotten casualties of this lockout given that they do not receive any pay and agreed at the outset of the lockout not to take jobs in other leagues, they had contact with league officials a few weeks ago when the league was hopeful of a Jan. 1 start to the regular season.
Although there hasn’t been contact since, it’s expected the officials would have a brief mini-camp, perhaps two days, as a kind of refresher to go over materials covered at the officials’ weeklong camp held in September before the lockout began.
The officials have been receiving weekly emails going over materials covered in September and they have also kept up with a regular weekly rules quiz during the lockout.
On another front, senior vice president of hockey operations Mike Murphy and the hockey operations staff have been working with the information technology personnel at the NHL’s 30 rinks through the lockout to upgrade technology infrastructure. ... The technology upgrades will, among other things, allow better, quicker video access to the NHL’s so-called war room in Toronto of various feeds from the rinks. Had the season started on time in October, the upgrades would have been ongoing through the season. With the lockout, all upgrades should be in place for the start of a truncated season, a league source said Sunday. A memo to that effect recently went out to NHL arena technology staff.
Miller is candid in acknowledging that a big reason for the void in programming — the NHL lockout (which will have cost NBCSN 33 games by the end of December) — is a source of enormous aggravation.
“It’s been very challenging and very frustrating,’’ Miller said. “We never had any indication that this situation with the NHL was going to last until January. It was always our understanding that this was going to be a tweak and a fix.”
The CBS strategy
While NBC Sports Network is to some degree at the mercy of the NHL, its chief current counterpart as a relative cable-sports newcomer recognizes a chance to make a move in the coming months.
CBS holds the rights to Super Bowl XLVII Feb. 3, and in March will be the familiar home of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Adding a prolonged post-Super Bowl program on CBS Sports Network is only one way it will attempt to maximize its relationship with CBS.
Interesting article on the obstacles some of the newer cable sports network are encountering in trying to chip away at ESPN's audience. Regarding the NHL, the comment on NBCSN being at the mercy of the NHL I also find interesting along with the quote from Miller. Brings up the question of if the NHL is putting the business relationship with a national network at risk and, if so, to what degree?
Last edited by jratelle19: 12-31-2012 at 07:51 AM.
Reason: to add comment
The key issues for the players are the drop in the salary cap in 2013-14, the first full season since the lockout began, and what they will lose in salary through escrow. In their latest offer, the owners called for a pro-rated $70-million (all currency U.S.) cap for whatever length this season is, with the cap dropping to $60-million in 2013-14. Both sides have already agreed to a 50-50 share of league revenue and the $60-million cap is based on the $3.3-billion in revenue the NHL earned in 2011-12, albeit split 50-50 with the players.
However, the players want a gradual drop to a cap based on a 50-50 split while the owners want it in 2013-14. The players also want the owners to guarantee a minimum escrow hit on their pay cheques.
It is thought the players asked for a $67-million salary cap in 2013-14, which is based on their 57-per-cent share of the 2011-12 revenue, and for a cap on their escrow payments. The owners have thus far refused to consider a cap on escrow. Sources with ties to the players have said if the owners are willing to accept a $67-million cap in 2013-14, the players would be willing to sign a new agreement for 10 years, which was demanded by the owners.
Another major issue was salary variance. The owners originally wanted no more than 5-per-cent variance in a player’s salary from year to year but raised that to 10 per cent in last week’s offer. Sources close to the players suggested this could be acceptable to them.