After the summer of 2011, I honestly didn’t believe that we’d hear the word “lockout” for at least 6 or 7 years. The NFL threatened us with a lockout, but we never really felt fear that the season would be affected. The NBA shortened its season because of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, but at times it felt like it was the league’s goal to give us a shortened season. Both lockouts felt like strategy, like those leagues just wanted to tighten the leash and make us remember who controls us.
But this impending NHL lockout doesn’t really feel like strategy, unless that strategy is “Let’s see if we can piss off our most loyal fans and operate with no network coverage at all.” At least that’s what I – a classy, intelligent St. Louis Blues fan – take away from the latest reports about the new NHLPA proposal, as the Sept. 15 lockout deadline looms.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly says the league’s negotiating committee had enough time to review the document it received Tuesday and has provided a response to the union.
The NHLPA’s offer included a smaller percentage of revenues for players over the next three seasons in exchange for an expanded revenue sharing program to help struggling teams.
The union says the deal could see players give up as much as $465 million if the league continues to grow at an average rate. (Via The Toronto Star)
On the surface, the NHLPA proposal sounds pretty generous – the players will relinquish most of their share of revenue for 3 seasons (depending on league growth) and the owners just have to increase their revenue sharing among the small market teams like the other leagues do. However, some people think that offer is pretty transparent as a way to turn the owners against each other, so when the two sides meet tomorrow, they’ll probably just end up fighting more.
I just wish both sides would think of the real victims here…