Time is running out to save a full 82-game season for the NHL and it’s players and as of Monday morning, no new meetings have been scheduled despite both sides talking via conference calls. The latest offer from the league had a start date of November 2 in mind and with that day rapidly approaching, it’s becoming less likely we’ll see hockey in early November.
Yet Bill Daly, NHL deputy commissioner feels that there is a deal to be made and that a framework for a new CBA is on the table. That sounds wonderful and all, but again, don’t be fooled by what could be viewed as another public relations ploy by the league and it’s owners. The question that needs to be asked following Daly’s statement is “who’s table?”
When asked if there was a chance to get a deal completed by this Thursday in order to allow the season to start on Nov. 2, Daly simply deferred the responsibility back to the players.
“that’s more of a question for the union than it is for me” – courtesy of Sportsnet.ca.
There again is that smug attitude of the league, floundering behind the thought of “we’ve come to the table with a reasonable offer and they haven’t, so play by our rules or else we’ll make you look bad.”
If the league and the owners truly believe there is a framework for a new deal on the table then why did they dismiss the player’s three different offers last week. Not only did they reject the three counter proposals, they did so in ten minutes which would barely be enough time to get through the details making it hard to believe that the league has any interest in negotiating. Rather they would prefer to bully their way into a season, forcing the player’s to accept the owners offer and not a penny less. The end result could be another lost season for the NHL, something that could be detrimental to an already fragile league.
Gary Bettman did admit to Donald Fehr that further concessions could be made to certain areas of the league’s offer, so why didn’t they use the player’s counter proposals as at least a starting point.
The two sides have no immediate plans to meet, making Thursday’s deadline all but a pipe dream at this point. Again, Bill Daly feels there is a framework for a new deal on the table, but what he did not disclose is that it’s the leagues table where dinner will be served and it appears the NHLPA is not invited.
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