Wednesday, May 04, 2005


What is the new deadline?

There is alot of pressure leaning towards May 24th and the players meeting. A player source said this to me: "Right now the guys are behind the leadership because of this new rounds of talks. If this doesn't go well, heads could roll at the players meeting. There is a misconception out there that the NHLPA doesn't need to make a deal soon. It is a misconception being driven by the NHLPA leadership, and yet it is completely erroneous. The NHLPA realizes this deal needs to be done immediately as well. The new proposal brought forth by the PA is a linkage deal. If they delay past even May 15th the damege begins, and that damage will affect players salaries directly. Plain and simple."

Another source "The NHL is nervous due to general mistrust of Bob's intentions..."

And a top source at the NHL said this..."we need someone to negotiate with. ever since he put his concept on the table on April 4, Bob has refused to negotiate over the two most important elements that need to be resolved -- the amount of the upper limit and the size of the range. also important is that time is not working to the players' benefit. our offers will continue decreasing -- not because we're trying to stick it to the players, but because the business is being damaged more and more. its almost already too late to save the damage for next year. all the normal selling is done in the spring."

The concept, let's call it the "Great Compromise" is still floating around on the players side. A player rep said this to me "It would go a long way towards resolving this if the current contracts were allowed to not be cut in price. We would be willing to void them from any future arbitration implications, or reset them by the 24% when it comes to arbitration. "

So is May 24th the deadline? stay tuned...

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