NHL CBA: It’s All About the Benjamins

Canucks Hockey Blog poster: NHL Lockout Day 2012

In 2004, Gary Bettman tried to sell fans on the idea that a new economic system – a hard salary cap – would result in lower ticket prices.

Economics 101 be damned.

At least this time around, the NHL isn’t pretending that the impending 2012 NHL lockout will benefit the fans. There are no false promises of cuts in ticket prices 21 million fans have willingly paid in each of the last 7 seasons since the lockout. Hell, despite a third lockout in 18 years, they’re not even worried about losing fans.

No, this one is all about the money.

Bettman already admitted this when he said, “We’re paying too much in salaries.

This is about as simple a negotiating position as the league can take.

It’s why Bettman thinks that revenue sharing is a distraction. The league has little interest in helping lower-revenue teams much more than they do now.

It’s why Bettman only references the NFL and NBA in terms of their players’ salaries as a percentage share of revenues, not in how both leagues provide real support to help stabilize their weaker market teams.

It’s why the owners want to redefine hockey-related revenue (HRR) so they keep more of the money they make.

It’s why the other issues like the player’s participation in the Olympics and player safety don’t matter as much.

It’s not about the fans or about ensuring 30 healthy franchises.

Even though they handed out some of most ridiculously-expensive contracts in this off-season, all that matters to Bettman and the NHL in a new CBA is that they pay players less.

Nothing else matters.

J.J. Guerrero

Founder and Executive Editor of Canucks Hockey Blog. Proud Canadian, hardcore Canucks fan. I would like nothing more than watching the Canucks win the Stanley Cup. Against the Leafs.

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3 Responses

  1. Alingenfelter says:

    Bettman is a weasel.Period.I think a fair deal would be 50/50. Its  not like the owners are using thier own money to build arenas. Look at Edmonton a billionare who could afford to build the arena himself wants the province to pony up millions of dollars and he keeps all the revenue. Pfffftttt to that.And the owners are still offering outrageous salaries but want the players to take less.When I watch hockey I watch the players NOT the owners.

  2. Zandber says:

    Woa! JJ getting funky with the photoshop.
    Well done!

  1. September 11, 2012

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