Lockout beard? (Photo: Getty Images)
If you're a hockey fan, you're clearly aware that there's very little optimism about a new Collective Bargaining Agreement on or prior to September 15th.
Now, someone who has been very involved in the negotiation process is considering his options if a conclusion isn't soon reached.
According to Teemu H (@EuroFlyers), recently extended Flyers Forward Scott Hartnell has reportedly contacted the General Manager of Kalpa, a professional hockey team based out of Finland playing in the SM-liiga:
Kalpa GM says Scott Hartnell has inquired about an opportunity to play for Kalpa if there's a lockout in the NHL.
— Teemu H (@euroflyers) August 28, 2012
CB Reader Nick Graff (@DXFlyers) also mentions that Hartnell is part-owner of Kalpa, along with Sami Kapanen and Kimmo Timonen. (Kapanen is the majority owner, with Timonen and Hartnell owning much smaller stakes of the team… at least that's what Wikipedia is telling me.)
Now, this isn't new, right? We've heard about plenty of guys considering their options in the event of a lockout, including Evgeni Malkin. What makes this specifically discouraging is that we're talking about Hartnell now, a guy who has involved himself in these talks more proactively than most. If he's taking a look at his options elsewhere, what does that say to us, the fans, about the possibility of a new CBA?
The NHL and the Players Association go back to the table once again today to attempt to move things forward, but from the outside looking in, the effort to do so seems lacking at best. I guess you can expect that when Gary Bettman and the owners want to roll back salaries 24 fucking percent, and want to take reduce the NHLPA's take to 43%, down from 57%.
It's not like you haven't heard all of this, but it's hard to understand where the owners are coming from when the NHL has grown to a $3 billion industry. It sure doesn't hurt them knowing that they get $200 million from NBC regardless of a lockout. The players will see none of that.
Add that on to the fact that owners are calling for five-year max deals when things like this, this, this, and this happened in the past two months, and you have an initative from the owners laced in hypocrisy.
There are quite a few folks who break this down far better than I have, including those who have defended the owners and even Gary Bettman, but all that really matters to us is that the current CBA expires in 18 days, and the lack of news on prgoress combined with rumblings of players (like Scott Hartnell) exploring other options doesn't lead to any optimism.
This shit is going to ruin my season ticket plan.
You can follow Ryan Gillon on Twitter @SeriouslyRyan.
The hypocrisy from the owners, and that includes Ed Snider is staggering in that they throw money around like drunken sailors on payday, then have the colossal nerve to want to roll back salaries because they can’t help themselves from dishing out those humongous contracts. How in hell do these clowns look at themselves in the mirror every morning is beyond my comprehension. Anyone who actually defends the actions of the owners and their lackey Bettman are just as cretinous.
The last major Hockey lock out/strike borderline destroyed the professional sport for years. Its only the last 4 where the NHL has returned to mainstream television again. Prior to the last strike, Fox was covering hockey and playoff hockey. Remember they had the glowing puck thing to make it easier to follow?
Then Hockey went away because of this strike. The NHL players and owners are in a tough spot and need to rethink business. Why do you have teams outside of the Northeast Corridor, uppermidwest, and pacific northwest? There is no reason Carolina, florida, texas, and Southern California should have hockey teams. Then I rethought about it and think, OK 1 hockey team in florida and SoCal because of transplants.
I say this because so many teams are losing money. its best to fold them or move them. You know whatr city could do well with a Hockey Team? Salt Lake City, its full of white people and cold weather. Move the Phoenix Coyotes to Salt Lake City.
The players will have to make concessions because how many times do we see players signed to long term deals and then are injured so bad they can’t play again, but don’t retire to continue getting that money and affecting salary cap (Chris Pronger?). 5 years makes sense.
Don’t ruin Hockey again, just as it was beginning to experience a resurgence amonsg sports fans
Hopefully hell be a lot better of a player-owner than Roger Dorn in Major League 2.
Owners like Ed Snider who are clearly willing to spend as much money as possible to make their team a contender, are not the owners who are trying to get a cap rollback. Why would teams who actively play their payroll as close to the cap limit as possible be trying to roll that back and dismantle their teams? Teams like the Rangers, Flyers, Bruins, Canucks, etc. are not the teams pushing for this renegotiation. Look to teams like Florida, the ‘Yotes, and the Islanders, who not only play well beneath the cap, but have been known to give players disproportionate raises at the season’s start just to hit the cap’s lower limit.
It’s the stingy owners who are pushing for this, and a stingy owner Ed Snider is not.
Ed Snider is cunt who spends money foolishly. That’s why this franchise has not won a cup in 38 years
Harts just wants that Finland pussy. Who’s he kidding
These fucking owners are the worst. Gary Bettman such a shiesty you know what. The Players Association need to hire a Jew so they can start ripping the owners off, instead of getting ripped off.
How Gary Bettman gets through each and every day without somebody throwing a bag of dog turds at him is beyond me.
A friend spoke at length with Hartnell yesterday. When he asked about his inquiry about playing in Finland Hartnell said it was just a rumor. Of course, he could have been downplaying…but who knows.
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