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Money changes everything

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Old
11-25-2003, 10:31 AM
  #1
Darth Milbury
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Money changes everything

I know I am restating the obvious here, but it is really amazing the impact money and the upcoming CBA are having on trade movement. We've gone from a situation where a small number of teams were always looking to delete payroll, to a situation where most teams couldn't afford the league's stars (and most teams regret the fat contracts they handed out only a year or two earlier), to a situations where teams basically can't add any payroll. It is no longer just the six million dollar players who are hard to move. Now, the million to two million dollar players are hard to move.

The Isles are really in a bad situation here because so many of our best assets will be FAs this summer. So, if we are forced to make $ dumps, we're not going to get anything close to fair value in return. Other teams with top stars coming up for contract renewal (like St. Louis with Demitra) may also be in for a rude awakening. The only choice most teams will have is pay up or accept virtually nothing in a trade.

Thoughts?

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11-25-2003, 10:56 AM
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I think you hit it right on the head. It's a shame that the owners and players cannot get on the same page, because it is obvious (to me at least) that unless there is some serious capitulation on both sides the NHL will be shut down a considerable amount of time.

Lets face it the economic model for the NHL is broken; the league as a whole does not have the revenue stream to support the salary growth that has been observed in the past 5 years. While I do not believe that the teams are in as bad a shape as the recent "independent" audit stated. I do believe that overall a NHL franchise is a sink hole for money.

Chomp, CHomp

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11-25-2003, 11:46 AM
  #3
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I think it is actually a nice change that a team like Edmonton can sign a player like Adam Oates because other teams are being financially responsible for once. The NHL is a much more interesting product IMO when the bidding for free agents is not simply between two or three big market clubs. I actually feel pretty bad for the Islanders who are saddled with Yashin's contract and Washington with Jagr's.. they're the kind of contracts that might absolutely kill a team's depth if the new CBA is anything like what we expect it to be.

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11-25-2003, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerebral
I think it is actually a nice change that a team like Edmonton can sign a player like Adam Oates because other teams are being financially responsible for once. The NHL is a much more interesting product IMO when the bidding for free agents is not simply between two or three big market clubs. I actually feel pretty bad for the Islanders who are saddled with Yashin's contract and Washington with Jagr's.. they're the kind of contracts that might absolutely kill a team's depth if the new CBA is anything like what we expect it to be.
I totally agree. When was the last time Edmonton went out and signed a well known free agent?

Never.

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11-25-2003, 11:53 AM
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If the league does ever institute a hard salary cap, the NHL will lose one of the things that had preiously made it unique (infortunately it has begun). Trades that were made solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice.

Football never has any trades, other than draft picks on draft day.

Basketball is so messed up due to their rules that players traded have to have equal salaries (within 10%).

Most baseball trades are now made because of $$$$

Hockey will be like baseball, and the excitment of draft day and trade deadline deals will disappear.

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Old
11-25-2003, 12:00 PM
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Cerebral
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
Hockey will be like baseball, and the excitment of draft day and trade deadline deals will disappear.
I would argue that hockey is already becoming like baseball and that a salary cap might actually help rectify the problem. You don't see Edmonton making a bunch of trades relating to how good their players are performing.. they traded Billy Guerin away a few years back when he was playing the best hockey of his career. Trades in hockey are already dominated by money issues (read: Jagr, Kovalev, Guerin, Weight, Yashin etc.). While some of these deals actually worked out fairly well for both teams involved, they were all based on economic factors and were in no way made "solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice".

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11-25-2003, 12:03 PM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slats432
I totally agree. When was the last time Edmonton went out and signed a well known free agent?

Never.
Woh woh.. we signed Scott Ferguson back in 2000..

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Old
11-25-2003, 12:07 PM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerebral
I would argue that hockey is already becoming like baseball and that a salary cap might actually help rectify the problem. You don't see Edmonton making a bunch of trades relating to how good their players are performing.. they traded Billy Guerin away a few years back when he was playing the best hockey of his career. Trades in hockey are already dominated by money issues (read: Jagr, Kovalev, Guerin, Weight, Yashin etc.). While some of these deals actually worked out fairly well for both teams involved, they were all based on economic factors and were in no way made "solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice".

As I said the upcoming CBA has already had a major effect on trades.

A hard salary cap would make trading much much more difficult, especially if it's anywhere below $50 million.

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11-25-2003, 12:17 PM
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
If the league does ever institute a hard salary cap, the NHL will lose one of the things that had preiously made it unique (infortunately it has begun). Trades that were made solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice.

Football never has any trades, other than draft picks on draft day.

Basketball is so messed up due to their rules that players traded have to have equal salaries (within 10%).

Most baseball trades are now made because of $$$$

Hockey will be like baseball, and the excitment of draft day and trade deadline deals will disappear.
Open you eyes, those types of deals are already being made. How about the Pittsburg deals Jagr and Kovalev, how about the Sharks and Nolan.....those were all made because of $$$ not talent on the ice.

At least a hard cap would attempt to level the playing field.

Chomp, Chomp

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Old
11-25-2003, 12:46 PM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
As I said the upcoming CBA has already had a major effect on trades.

A hard salary cap would make trading much much more difficult, especially if it's anywhere below $50 million.

I suppose what is already happening, as Shark Attack points out, is that there is a "soft" cap in place. Teams have such tight budgets right now that even minor player transactions cause a reshuffle of the payroll.

I think, in a lot of ways, the Wiemer deal was very signficant. I realize he is a fairly limited player who doens't really make that much money. But, the manner in which the Isles had to dump him is notable. Team budgets are such a mess than even a third line guy like that is hard to move.

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11-25-2003, 12:51 PM
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I guess I am naive, but I think it is sad that fans have to know so much about the economics of sports.

I remember when I was kid following sports in general I didn't know anything about contract negotiations, salaries, signing bonuses, hold outs, or anything of the sort. Not saying it wasn't covered or the information wasn't there, I just didn't know about. I really like the view sports I had when I was 10 years old.

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Old
11-25-2003, 01:23 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimEIV
I guess I am naive, but I think it is sad that fans have to know so much about the economics of sports.

I remember when I was kid following sports in general I didn't know anything about contract negotiations, salaries, signing bonuses, hold outs, or anything of the sort. Not saying it wasn't covered or the information wasn't there, I just didn't know about. I really like the view sports I had when I was 10 years old.

Well said. I couldn't agree more.

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11-25-2003, 01:23 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Milbury
I suppose what is already happening, as Shark Attack points out, is that there is a "soft" cap in place. Teams have such tight budgets right now that even minor player transactions cause a reshuffle of the payroll.

I think, in a lot of ways, the Wiemer deal was very signficant. I realize he is a fairly limited player who doens't really make that much money. But, the manner in which the Isles had to dump him is notable. Team budgets are such a mess than even a third line guy like that is hard to move.
I agree 100%. That is why I was shocked by that deal. Weimer is the type of player that every team in the league needs, and can afford, but he still was waived. This is a guy that makes slightly less than the league average, and apparently no one would pick up his salary in a trade. (My thought process if MM could of gotten a 6th rounder for him, he would of made the trade).

Best comparison that I can make is Varada. He plays a similiar game, makes similiar $, and was traded for a very highly thought of prospect that just had been taken in the 1st round. Weimer goes for nothing 30 regular season games later. Just bizarre.

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Old
11-25-2003, 01:33 PM
  #14
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Originally Posted by Beukeboom Fan
I agree 100%. That is why I was shocked by that deal. Weimer is the type of player that every team in the league needs, and can afford, but he still was waived. This is a guy that makes slightly less than the league average, and apparently no one would pick up his salary in a trade. (My thought process if MM could of gotten a 6th rounder for him, he would of made the trade).

Best comparison that I can make is Varada. He plays a similiar game, makes similiar $, and was traded for a very highly thought of prospect that just had been taken in the 1st round. Weimer goes for nothing 30 regular season games later. Just bizarre.

Of course, the fact that Darcy Reiger is a shrewd GM and the Isles have a total moron for a GM might have had something to do with that.....

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Old
11-25-2003, 01:43 PM
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
If the league does ever institute a hard salary cap, the NHL will lose one of the things that had preiously made it unique (infortunately it has begun). Trades that were made solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice.
You're describing a trade market that hasn't existed for years, except for a handful of teams.

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11-25-2003, 02:01 PM
  #16
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Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
If the league does ever institute a hard salary cap, the NHL will lose one of the things that had preiously made it unique (infortunately it has begun). Trades that were made solely for reasons relating to performance on the ice.

Football never has any trades, other than draft picks on draft day.

Basketball is so messed up due to their rules that players traded have to have equal salaries (within 10%).

Most baseball trades are now made because of $$$$

Hockey will be like baseball, and the excitment of draft day and trade deadline deals will disappear.
I disagree. First, the NFL never had that many trades in the first place. If the league as a whole had five trades involving players moving in any one year during the '80, that was very high activity. Most NFL chose, and still choose, to improve through the draft.

The draft and player development process in the NHL is vastly different than in the NFL. The NHL would still have to rely on trades because their player development process can take years.

The NHL and MLB will not even be close if a hard cap is emplaced. Player salaries will stabilize. I remember in the mid-'90, when NFL fans had many of the same fears that we now have about the NHL. It never materialized. I predict similar results with the new CBA if a hard cap is part of it.

 
Old
11-25-2003, 02:28 PM
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimEIV
I guess I am naive, but I think it is sad that fans have to know so much about the economics of sports.

I remember when I was kid following sports in general I didn't know anything about contract negotiations, salaries, signing bonuses, hold outs, or anything of the sort. Not saying it wasn't covered or the information wasn't there, I just didn't know about. I really like the view sports I had when I was 10 years old.
Well that makes two of us naivetes!

Likely a pipedream, but who ultimately benefits from the public disclosure of salaries?

Fans? No. Knowledge of a player's salary often breeds contempt, jealousy and unrealistic expectations. For example, Martin Lapointe is a superb player at <$2M a year, he instantaneously is deemed a "fatcat" at $5M per.

Owners? Certainly not.

Players? Yes, but I'd bet if you polled players, a majority would say they'd welcome not having their salaries published.

The answer: sportwriters and most of all, agents. The former so they have something to gossip about, the latter for negotiating purposes (the leverage that publicizing the salary dispute and numbers provides.)

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Old
11-25-2003, 02:52 PM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark Attack
Open you eyes, those types of deals are already being made. How about the Pittsburg deals Jagr and Kovalev, how about the Sharks and Nolan.....those were all made because of $$$ not talent on the ice.

At least a hard cap would attempt to level the playing field.

Chomp, Chomp

I agree, with you statement, and the thought of a new CBA is only making it worse.

The changes started about 5-7 years ago and they were happening slowly (generally to small-market canadian teams).

Each year and especially now with the thought of the upcoming CBA it has gotten further and further away from trades being "just about hockey".

It's still my opinion that any kind of hard salary cap or strict luxury tax will only make the situation far worse than it currently is.

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11-25-2003, 04:22 PM
  #19
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Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
I agree, with you statement, and the thought of a new CBA is only making it worse.

The changes started about 5-7 years ago and they were happening slowly (generally to small-market canadian teams).

Each year and especially now with the thought of the upcoming CBA it has gotten further and further away from trades being "just about hockey".

It's still my opinion that any kind of hard salary cap or strict luxury tax will only make the situation far worse than it currently is.
I respect you opinion, but I just don't understand why you aren't in favor of a hard cap? I don't think it'll affect things as much as most think it will.

Here's another benefit of the hard cap: a team is grossing, say, $80M a year, and the cap is at, hypothetically, $45M. Said team can do some things with that money. First, it has much more to contribute to the construction of any new arena or complexes without relying so much on the community, leading to less relocation and helping the local economy. It also can improve facilities to attract better UFA's. And maybe most importantly, said team can lower ticket prices.

 
Old
11-25-2003, 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Sabot55
I respect you opinion, but I just don't understand why you aren't in favor of a hard cap? I don't think it'll affect things as much as most think it will.

Here's another benefit of the hard cap: a team is grossing, say, $80M a year, and the cap is at, hypothetically, $45M. Said team can do some things with that money. First, it has much more to contribute to the construction of any new arena or complexes without relying so much on the community, leading to less relocation and helping the local economy. It also can improve facilities to attract better UFA's. And maybe most importantly, said team can lower ticket prices.
If I thought that ticket prices will drop, I would be much more in favor of it.

Owners will charge whatever they think the market is for tickets. Ticket prices will not go down.

Why can't owners just realize what they can afford to spend, and set a budget and stick to it ?

If a hard cap is set at $45 million and my team's revenues are $80 million, all the salary cap did was manage to make my owner an extra $10-20 million.

Owners are going to put that money in their pocket, not back into the local economy, or into new buildings, or cheaper tickets.

--------------------------------------------------

Obviously each persons views are partially determined by the city they live in. season ticket holders in Edmonton are going to feel differently than season ticket holders in Philadelphia or New York.

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11-25-2003, 05:12 PM
  #21
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Obviously each persons views are partially determined by the city they live in. season ticket holders in Edmonton are going to feel differently than season ticket holders in Philadelphia or New York.
Agreed. Your view as a Phily fans will differ from mine, a Buffalo fan. However, ticket prices have stabilized, and in some cases, lowered, in the NFL. Especially in the cheaper seats. It will have an effect. Who is going to pay high prices when everyone know the team's profit margin? Lowered attendance will force lower prices. Supply and demand.

 
Old
11-25-2003, 05:30 PM
  #22
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Originally Posted by Sabot55
Agreed. Your view as a Phily fans will differ from mine, a Buffalo fan. However, ticket prices have stabilized, and in some cases, lowered, in the NFL. Especially in the cheaper seats. It will have an effect. Who is going to pay high prices when everyone know the team's profit margin? Lowered attendance will force lower prices. Supply and demand.
Ticket prices will only drop if people stop going to the games.

People only stop going to the games when either they can't afford it any longer, or the product on the ice is horrible.

People won't stop going if the realize the owners are making too much money, the average fan doesn't think of profit margin. They think, can I afford to pay this, and is it worth the money I am paying.

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11-25-2003, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilers_guy_eddie
You're describing a trade market that hasn't existed for years, except for a handful of teams.

You're right, of course, but that cat in your avatar still creeps me out.

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11-25-2003, 05:46 PM
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
Ticket prices will only drop if people stop going to the games.

People only stop going to the games when either they can't afford it any longer, or the product on the ice is horrible.

People won't stop going if the realize the owners are making too much money, the average fan doesn't think of profit margin. They think, can I afford to pay this, and is it worth the money I am paying.
Unless you live in Toronto and then people will continue to pay and sell out the building no matter how crappy the on ice product is. All a cap will do is make the rich teams more money.. yeah!

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11-25-2003, 05:51 PM
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Milbury
The Isles are really in a bad situation here because so many of our best assets will be FAs this summer. So, if we are forced to make $ dumps, we're not going to get anything close to fair value in return. Other teams with top stars coming up for contract renewal (like St. Louis with Demitra) may also be in for a rude awakening. The only choice most teams will have is pay up or accept virtually nothing in a trade.

Thoughts?
On the other hand, if the UFA age is dropped significantly (28?) - and it will if a cap is implemented - then everything changes.

Sure, teams may loose top players, but they can also become bidders for other top players.

Yes teams may get nothing in return for some of their assets but when they can get other assets for nothing things tend to even out a little.

Of coarse, this all will take time...

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