Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Glenn Healy: "This will be a better deal than the one in February"

Glenn Healy, TSN NHL Insider and staunch NHLPA supporter, on whether the players are getting a bad deal (transcript of TSN video clip):
"If I was a player, I wouldn't be doing cartwheels over this deal. But, [if] you want to play hockey, this is what you have to do to get the game back on the ice. It's basically a money transfer. Players made hay for ten years, now it's the owners' turn...Well that is probably the biggest myth that is out there [that the deal is worse]. The deal they are negotiating and are about to sign is a better deal than the one in February, and for three reasons. It is now a full partnership, and by full partnership what I mean, revenue sharing all the way through the deal and it goes up as revenues go up. The players now are part of the competition committee. They have a real hand on driving those revenues up. And when those revenues go up, the cap doesn't stay at $42.5 million like the deal in February. It goes up to $50 million, and maybe upwards of $60 million - whatever the revenues dictate. There's a floor on the deal- teams have to spend a minimum. The biggest thing, the guts of the deal, are the December 9th, basically, player's proposal. Better qualifying offers, better arbitration, better minimums, better pension, and better free agency. We were born with two ears and one mouth, and we should use these a little bit more [points to ears]. This will be a better deal than the one in February."
Interesting...but it's a big IF how the revenues dictate the cap. And, while the NHLPA might've won on other issues, the main issue and concession was for them to accept a cap at $36-38 million. It could be the difference between Nick Lidstrom making $10 million or $5 million. But Healy is right that the deal is more of a partnership, and it was a huge victory for the players to get equal seats on the competition committee, taking that sole responsibility from the GM's. I doubt we'll hear players saying this deal is better than the one in February though...they just lost last season's salary and a major chunk of the rest of their career salaries under this CBA. I don't think a pension increase will make up for that...they could've possibly won on the most issues but lost on the biggest one.


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