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Yes Virgina, NHL'ers will play under a salary cap

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02-12-2005, 03:48 AM
  #1
Briannj1970
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Yes Virgina, NHL'ers will play under a salary cap

Either the greatest hypocrisy or a telling sign about which way the the PA is really leaning....

http://www.canoe.ca/NewsStand/London...28629-sun.html

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The irony is rich. Millionaire NHL stars playing before tiny crowds. For a pittance. Then giving the money away. Having just installed more expensive parts to the machinery, the Motor City Mechanics hummed into quaint McMorran Place Arena here last night for a 3-2 victory over the Port Huron Beacons with Detroit Red Wings defencemen Chris Chelios and Derian Hatcher in the lineup along with Ottawa Senators forward Brian Smolinski and Los Angeles Kings forward Sean Avery.

The United Hockey League's last-place team soon will be joined by Wing Kris Draper, leading one to wonder how long it will be in last place.

But irony of ironies, all the NHLers are playing the under the UHL's $260,000 team salary cap, the very thing that stands between the locked-out NHL players and the collective bargaining agreement with their leagues owners.

This isn't about the money they all insist. The average UHL salary is $500 a week. It's about getting game action. They miss it.

"There's nowhere else to play, " said Hatcher, who would have been in the second year of a five-year, $30-million US contract with the Wings. "There are a lot of guys who don't want to leave their families to play in Europe."

It's hockey close to home, and the NHLers will play games only against other Michigan teams in Flint, Kalamazoo, Muskegon -- and here as well as home games. They're donating their salaries to charities.

Chelios, a 43-year-old unrestricted free agent, had expected to sign a one-year deal with the Wings for $2.3 million. Draper, who is awaiting insurance clearance to play, signed a four-year contract calling for $11.2 million last summer.

Even though he played for the U.S. in the World Cup in September, Chelios hasn't spent as long out of meaningful action since he was a tot. Same with the others.

"Longest-ever for me," Hatcher said afterward. "I was about three years old."

Accustomed to more than a decade of sellout crowds numbering more than 20,000 at Joe Louis Arena, the Wings at least helped fill McMorran Place last night as 3,303 crammed in for the first sellout in five years in a game refereed by London's Sean Reid.

It was exciting enough but the disparity in talent, blurred somewhat by the new signees' lack of action, is notable. When you see Hatcher, never known for his pace, on a breakaway, it becomes obvious the hockey is a levels below the NHL.

And Avery kept the NHLers' record intact. Each of them has scored the opening goal in his first game. Avery scored twice last night.

While the Mechanics and the UHL are pleased with the attention that the NHLers have drawn to their unheralded league, about the only completely happy player you can find is Mechanics goaltender Rod Branch, who contends his workload has been cut by 25 per cent. Looking at the tandem of Chelios and Hatcher in front of him gives him a warm feeling.

The same can't be said for other players around the league, even though the NHLers insisted they would sign only if they weren't bumping another player out of a job. They are seen as interlopers. Avery stopped in front of the Port Huron bench to hurl some invective back last night and Hatcher was the target of a few healthy hits.

Chelios got a cheer afterward when he presented a cheque for $1,000 for leukemia research, causing one fan to shout, "I don't hear anyone yelling 'scab' now."

The UHL has never seen as much media attention, and the full houses for a last-place visiting team are a clear bonus. Its players ought to enjoy it while it lasts.
If these guys'll play under a $260,000 team salary cap just to play, they won't play under a 42 million one?

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02-12-2005, 03:54 AM
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Injektilo
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you don't think this hasn't been discussed before?


1. They want to keep in shape.
2. They aren't playing their entire career in the UHL.
3. The UHL is not the NHL. They don't feel that the UHL owners are trying to screw them over.

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02-12-2005, 04:00 AM
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Briannj1970
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Originally Posted by Injektilo
you don't think this hasn't been discussed before?


1. They want to keep in shape.
2. They aren't playing their entire career in the UHL.
3. The UHL is not the NHL. They don't feel that the UHL owners are trying to screw them over.
That's not the point. All along the word "philosophical" has been thrown around like a rag doll when it's come to a salary cap. If this was a matter of priniciple (and we might be able to assume that it is since using "philosophical" like that is kind of like saying, "We don't believe in playind under any form of a salary cap"), then stick to your moral guns and don't play under one in any league. You don't believe in it, don't justify it by playing under one. These guys clearly have. Keep in shape some other way, don't keep in shape playing in a league that contains the very thing you're so against.

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02-12-2005, 05:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Briannj1970
That's not the point. All along the word "philosophical" has been thrown around like a rag doll when it's come to a salary cap. If this was a matter of priniciple, then stick to your moral guns and don't play under one in any league.
Hell, start a revolution in the UHL.
Fight the power, my oppressed brothers!

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02-12-2005, 06:54 AM
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The players are being locked out. They can't play in the NHL. So they play somewhere else for money. It's not that hard to comprehend and we all would probably do the same thing.

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02-12-2005, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Briannj1970
That's not the point. All along the word "philosophical" has been thrown around like a rag doll when it's come to a salary cap. If this was a matter of priniciple (and we might be able to assume that it is since using "philosophical" like that is kind of like saying, "We don't believe in playind under any form of a salary cap"), then stick to your moral guns and don't play under one in any league. You don't believe in it, don't justify it by playing under one. These guys clearly have. Keep in shape some other way, don't keep in shape playing in a league that contains the very thing you're so against.
Right on!

Add one more thing, they are scabs. The money they don't need is taken from another player's pocket who does need to play in the UHL.

I don't like it much and I'll bet that it turns out badly for one of them.

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02-12-2005, 07:03 AM
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Does anyone know if the UHL's salary cap is tied to their revenues at all? I think part of the NHLPA's "philosophical" stance has been to oppose a salary cap that is directly tied to league revenues. I know Roenick came out and said that exact thing a week or so ago when interviewed by ESPN on Sportscenter. And if the players aren't retaining the salaries because they're giving the money to charity, then they are just playing hockey for free like plenty of other people do in rec leagues.

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02-12-2005, 07:36 AM
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Briannj1970
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coolburn
Does anyone know if the UHL's salary cap is tied to their revenues at all? I think part of the NHLPA's "philosophical" stance has been to oppose a salary cap that is directly tied to league revenues. I know Roenick came out and said that exact thing a week or so ago when interviewed by ESPN on Sportscenter. And if the players aren't retaining the salaries because they're giving the money to charity, then they are just playing hockey for free like plenty of other people do in rec leagues.
Robert Esche was quoted as saying he wouldn't play under a 200 million dollar salary cap. Okay...so let's say the NHL links player salaries to revenues. He won't play under a 200 million dollar cap, but does he think it's okay to have his partners in crime playing in a leauge with an average salary of 500 dollars a week? Who cares if they don't link player salaries to revenue. Just look at the whole picture here. There isn't anything wrong going on with it? If I'm looking at this thing the wrong way, I'd love to know.

I don't think there's an NHL'er around at this point who would go back to playing for the Stanley Cup for 500 dollars a week...linked revenues or not.

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02-12-2005, 07:51 AM
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If the UHL teams pulled in NHL-level revenues, attendance, and media attention I could understand the argument a little more. It's not about playing under a cap.. it's about playing under a cap in the NHL. I don't understand the big resistance to it myself, but that's the issue.

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