Author Topic: 2004/2005 NHL Offseason  (Read 21998 times)

Offline Morgbug

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #450 on: February 16, 2005, 02:02 PM »
I disagree.  I'm not sure if it's splitting hairs or not, but I think a $40+ mill cap is going to kill a number of teams.  Edmonton being one of them.  Calgary, Ottawa and Vancouver being a couple of others.  I don't know enough about the financial status of the US teams to say who, if any will be affected. 

The NHL is not a major league sport.  Players should not expect to be paid on par with the other Major League sports - NFL,MLB, NBA.  There is no fantastic merchandising program, there is no great TV contract - it's just not that popular outside of fans.  They are asking for more than the revenues can generate.  It's not reasonable to expect what Barry Bonds is getting paid - there's lots of other income sources to generate his salary, one way or the other.  Not so for hockey.  Bowling has similar if not higher ratings to the NHL in the US.  Shouldn't players be paid similar salaries?  Oh, and bowlers have to win to get their salary. 

That there is any discussion of a cap has led me to a single conclusion - it is high enough that Winnipeg will never again have a hockey team in the NHL.  That's sad, for me and in general.  I don't get an apology from a team, my community was deemed unsuitable for an NHL franchise in spite of fan support, decent attendance and a love and understanding of the game.  Apparently the deep south has that ::)  Or maybe it's all about something else. 

I'm just happy that people who are hockey fans can now relate to losing a team, even if only for a season (Minnesota, Quebec fans are excused from that comment).  Hey Toronto, now maybe you understand our pain.
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Offline DSJ™

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #451 on: February 16, 2005, 02:06 PM »
I disagree.  I'm not sure if it's splitting hairs or not, but I think a $40+ mill cap is going to kill a number of teams.  Edmonton being one of them. 

 :'(

Online Jeff

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #452 on: February 16, 2005, 02:12 PM »
These schmoes got to within 6.5 mil of each other and couldn't just split the f'n' difference?

The best part about the whole thing is Bettman's statement in the QnA part where he said:


From Canadian Press:

Quote
The NHL is planning for the 2005-06 season, and will pursue more labour talks but Bettman warned the league is going to have to look at a "completely different economic model and it is going to have to have linkage (between revenue and player salary costs)."

"The best deal that was on the table is now gone," he added.


So, now the NHL would like to explore an entirely different model...  meaning ALL the negotiating will start over from square 1.   ::)

It just re-inforces my belief that this latest round of talks was merely for "show".  I think that's the reason they didn't split the difference because the NHL never intended to move forward on this latest offer...

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Offline Morgbug

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #453 on: February 16, 2005, 02:16 PM »
I agree Jeff, there was no real intent. 

I would have to think the owners and Bettman are sitting back, sucking on stogies and feeling pretty smug.  They got the cap concession out of the NHLPA and still declined to have a season.  Big cojones on that.  The no-season, no-deal is probably a way of further reprimanding the NHLPA/Goodenow.  I would suggest that is not a real healthy way of bargaining.  They may have saved face with the fans (to some extent) by appearing to try and deal, but were I a player, I'd be even more pissed off than prior to the last couple of days. 
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Offline CHEWIE

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #454 on: February 16, 2005, 03:31 PM »
6.5 million difference X 30 teams = 195 million difference.  Still way too far apart.  Damnit.

I'm glad they didn't try and play a false season with 28 games - I will miss the playoffs so much, but it serves both sides right.

They never should have expanded and diluted the talent in the league.  Remember the early 90s with how awesome it was seeing Hull, Gretzky, Sakic, Lemiux, etc. tear it up?  We'll probably never see hockey that fun again, unless some huge changes are made.

 :P

Offline Jesse James

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #455 on: February 16, 2005, 04:03 PM »
I think the concession was, at the least, a hopeful sign...  Though now this bitchslap to the NHLPA of getting concessions they asked for then cancelling the season anyway may bite them in the ass in future negotiations.

How this'll effect teams, I don't know, but I think even in the $40 millions was SOMETHING good to think about.  Without knowing the rest of the contract's stipulations, it is tough to say how "good" that would've/could've been for "small market" teams.  I dunno.  It was something though...

I'm not surprised at any of this.  I bitched up a storm to my gf on the phone about it.  It was completely asinine, and even if they'd come to an agreement I think Bettman and Goodenow both need taken to a field and beat about the head severely with hockey sticks by fans.  They're both the incredible jerkoffs they've made themselves out to be throughout this.

Pittsburgh fans (being interviewed on the street) seemed unanymous in that the NHL needs an overhaul beyond a cap...  Most compared it directly to Baseball, and how that can't seem to get its **** together either.  I agree...  Short of the television coverage, but I agree.

I think a completely straightened around NHL could really take off.  That won't happen till Bettman's forced out though, and even then his replacement's gonna have to be someone OTHER than one of his cronies.

Oh well, I sit and wait now for the NFL to come back in season I guess.  I hate Baseball with a passion...  NASCAR's ok, but not something I'm intense about like Hockey or Football.  Minor league games may be on TV more though so I'll watch for those I guess...   :-\  Otherwise I just hope for warmer weather and to survive the year.

Oh yeah, there's always Star Wars to entertain me I suppose....  *sigh*
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #456 on: February 16, 2005, 04:21 PM »
They never should have expanded and diluted the talent in the league.  Remember the early 90s with how awesome it was seeing Hull, Gretzky, Sakic, Lemiux, etc. tear it up?  We'll probably never see hockey that fun again, unless some huge changes are made.

 :P


It's funny, I couldn't remember how many teams there were then, so I googled to find out.  It's amazing what you can find on the subject :o  Lots of individual web pages for sure.  One guy did a ratio of number of players to number of citizens in Canada, concluding because there were more people in Canada for every NHL player from Canada, the calibre had increased.  While on the surface, I can see that, it completley ignores that most of Canada's population increase is from immigration and not from hockey playing nations.  With all due respect to those of African or Asian descent, they are not hockey hotbeds so I don't think his measure is entirely accurate.  This is not to say that these nationalities cannot play hockey at a high level, just to say that it isn't as dominant culturally as it is in their adopted country. 

Anyway, stolen from here clicky we have the following:

78/79 - 17 teams
79-91 - 21 teams - 79/80 was the year that Winnipeg, Edmonton, Quebec and Hartford joined the NHL
91/92 - 22 teams
92/93 - 24 teams
93-98 - 26 teams
98/99 - 27 teams
99/00 - 28 teams
2000-current 30 teams

So if we take Chewie's estimate, the right number of teams is about 21.  Nine have to go.  Who are they?

And oh yeah, agree with Jesse on Bettman, no love for that man here.
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Online Jeff

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #457 on: February 16, 2005, 05:09 PM »
So if we take Chewie's estimate, the right number of teams is about 21.  Nine have to go.  Who are they?


From waaaaaaay earlier in this mess, here's what I said and it still looks good to me:

Here's what I'd do. 

Four 5 Team Divisions - bring back the Old School Names!

Prince of Wales Conference

Adams (Northeast) Division:
Buffalo
Boston
Montreal
Ottawa - (relaces the Whale)
NY Islanders - (replaces Le Nordique)

Patrick (Atlantic) Division:
Pittsburgh
NY Rangers
New Jersey
Philadelphia
Washington

Campbell Conference

Norris (Midwestern) Division:
Toronto
Chicago
St. Louis
Minnesota
Detroit

Smythe (Pacific) Division:
Vancouver
Los Angeles
Colorado - (sorry bug, no return for Winnipeg :()
Edmonton
Calgary


These Areas would be out of luck as their teams would be dissolved...
Atlanta
Carolina
Florida
Tampa Bay
Dallas
San Jose
Nashville
Anaheim
Columbus
Phoenix

Ditch the trap, shrink goalie pads (width, not thickness), and open up the ice.

Not to brag, but it would totally fix the NHL.  ;)

Of course, listening to some of the $$$ stuff the NHL says they are facing, I can see how there would be room for some swap-outs based on TV markets and $$$. 

For example, I could see the NHL making the following changes to my plan:
- dropping Edmonton for Dallas (sorry Dale :()
- dropping Ottawa for NJ in the Adams and then putting 1 of Carolina/Columbus/Nashville in NJ's place in the Patrick
- dropping another Canadian Team (Vancouver/Calgary) in favor of 1 of Phoenix/San Jose/Anaheim

The NHL likes the $$$ that is out there in the SW USA, so I'd bet if they have to contract teams the majority of contracted teams would all come from the NASCAR belt (south-eastern USA) or, sadly, western Canada.
Jeff
 
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #458 on: February 16, 2005, 05:37 PM »
Well, I still hate you for that and will continue to do so.  As for the list, I probably said it earlier, but I'll make some changes without looking to see how consistent I am. 

I'd say Dallas needs a team.  I don't think the support ever wavered after moving from Minnesota and they've been managed well and seem to have a good fan base. 

Adams - I'd axe the Islanders.  Given the relative popularity of hockey overall, I don't think any city merits two teams, regardless of how large they are.  Given that my impression of the east coast is one of a large megalopolis, I think Jersey is close enough to cover that off.  I realize fully the history there but Winnipeg won a Cup long before the Islanders ever did.  Ottawa I'm wishy-washy on as well, they seem to draw as many people from Toronto and don't sell out usually unless the Leafs are playing.  It's a good hockey city but I don't think they've been any better in terms of fan support than Winnipeg ever was. 

Patrick - I'd probably dump the Capitals.  I've said this before and it is spoken out of ignorance, I just don't get why they have a team?  It's not really a hockey hotbed, I see lots of empty seats and limited fan support.  So why have a team?

Norris - I'd keep all the teams, but probably move St. Louis out of there to allow for Winnipeg.  I'd rather not make the same mistake as the league did by moving Winnipeg to the Smythe division, two time zones over for the most part. 

Smythe - I like what Jeff has. 

So big differences are dumping Washington and the Islanders, bringing in Winnipeg (yeah, it's sentimental and selfish, but explain the Capitals to me) and a team in the east.  I guess Dallas doesn't fit that bill. 

Here's who I'd drop:

Atlanta
Carolina
Florida
Tampa Bay
Islanders
San Jose
Nashville
Anaheim
Columbus
Phoenix
Washington

That's 11 but I brought in Winnipeg and Dallas, so it's only nine. If you leave in Ottawa it has that makes 8 Canadian teams (with Winnipeg). 

That said, they really need some restructuring beyond a cap to function anyway - profit sharing a la NFL style.  Without it any discussion of the NHL in Winnipeg (and Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver) is pretty much doomed from the start.  Learn to market yourself and realize that just because a guy is rich and wants a team in butthole, Louisiana, it probably isn't a good idea. 

I think New Orleans needs a hockey team, after all, isn't Cajun blood a mix of French Canadian and a few others? ::)

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Offline John C

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #459 on: February 16, 2005, 06:00 PM »
The glimmer of hope has dimmed.  The greediness of the owners and NHLPA have just about killed the NHL as we know it.  I won't be surprised if several teams fold now.  The Florida teams are in trouble, Ottawa and Buffalo are in trouble and there are at least five or six more that aren't making money.  Dallas was making money the last I heard.  They can stay.  Atlanta and Columbus are new, so I think they deserve a few years at least.  It's harsh to kill teams off, but necessary if pro hockey wants to survive.   A smaller league with less teams would help the quality of play as well.  The talent will not be spread as thin as it is now.  Rule changes should be made to increase scoring.  The smaller pads and wider arena sound good to me.  Why can't the league see that they will never be a true major sport?  Stick with the regional roots and maybe a few exceptions for the good of the league.  The NHL can work.  It has for a long time until idiots got involved.  It can work again.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2005, 06:00 PM by Jack »

Offline Jesse James

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #460 on: February 17, 2005, 04:25 PM »
I think I'd have 6 teams per division instead...  Keep some of the southern teams because Florida's been a pretty big place for hockey it seems.  That's mostly due to the northerner's migrating there I believe, but nonetheless...  Same for Dallas, and Cali's a big enough state that 2 teams wouldn't hurt.  All 3 have made pretty big strides I believe.

I agree with you Brent on dropping the Capitals.  Why they have a team is beyond me, but every year the Pens played them in the playoffs, there were equal numbers of Pens fans in the stands.  Their crowd doesn't give 2 craps.  You don't see that between Cleveland and Pittsburgh in the NFL...  Washington's even further away but we still pack their seats.

The Islanders I agree with as well, partly because I agree that (given the NHL's status) no city needs two teams, not to mention that even Ranger's fans tend to be fair weather fans, much less the Islanders who, when they suck, have one hell of an empty arena it seems.

NJ I think's a solid team, with solid fans.  I'm not wild about admitting that, and maybe it's that I'm just too used to their good years they've had for the past while, but they do tend to be pretty reliable to support their team so I am not sure I agree with dumping them entirely.

Part of me says keeping Carolina too (if it went to a 6 team division like I mentioned), given that they too seem to be supportive of the Hurricanes, even in some bad times they've experienced early.

Beyond that, a multi-station deal for TV would be nice...  A constant season-long deal with ESPN, local deals for local teams, a FOX TV deal like once a month, and then ABC gets rights to the playoffs but SHARES them with local stations carrying local teams (Fox Sports Pittsburgh carries the Pens for instance, and you can choose who to watch if you're living in that city but outside it you have to watch the national channel).

I think that'd be an awesome, and not too over-the-top TV idea as far as what they need for publicity but not over-saturating television with Hockey.
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #461 on: February 18, 2005, 12:17 AM »
Minivans: a sign of the apocalypse.

Offline Jesse James

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #462 on: February 18, 2005, 12:44 AM »
It's tough to argue with that...  The players would retort with "We play the game...  That's our risk!", and to that extent I agree they do take risk, but who the hell CAN'T live even on the crunched salary?  Paris ******* Hilton? 

News was talking tonight about the Joint Lemieux/Gretzky (rumored entirely, and denied by Gretzky) attempts to "save the season" (I'm not sure everyone at the old news-office got the memo that the season is done).  I think the city here is really missing hockey more than they anticipated.  We're not an NBA town, Spring Training doesn't do us a ton of good, and the NFL's over.  Pittsburgh's hurting for sports right now short of Pitt basketball and what the kiddies are accomplishing.  It's pretty sad really.

Never seen so many Wheeling Nailers commercials in all my life.   ::)

EDIT:

BTW, a part of that story I enjoyed was pointing out the NHLers who've bumped out minor league players on various levels.  Solidarity my hairy white ass!   >:(

It reminds me of a story about my mother...  Oddly enough.

My mother, for 18 or 20 (or more, I forget) years of my existance worked for the town's local Steel Worker's Union Hall in town.  It's a large hall upstairs and downstairs...  The kind rented for weddings, parties, etc. 

My mother cleaned was their janitor...  Not really contracted or anything, she just did this work under a set list of duties for a set pay...  There was no vacation, there was rarely ever any pay increase (she got two raises throughout her years there). 

The union workers who were her "boss" were the Trustee Committee members of the union.  She always did the job to their satisfaction though, and never once did she get a complaint.  If anything she went above and beyond her job, and the only person to ever gripe was the secretary at the hall who was nothing short of a snotty bitch who thought she was better than anyone who actually had to "work", including the Union members.

Well, a couple years ago...  I forget how long really, it was just a few maybe ago, the Union Trustees started changing my mother's "duty list" without her knowing.  She knew they were doing it though because her job description (usually tacked to her door for the upstairs closet was gone).  Little did THEY know she took it and had made copies so her job description was always there, "just in case".

So they come back with all these new duties for her...  She asks why the revised list, and she also tells them "you give me that much more work and I'm going to be needing a pay increase".  They expected her to do it for free...  She was going to be dealing with "routine rentals" now because the Union was going broke...  The leaders had spent the coffers dry and they were going to actively push rentals, and they wanted her to do clean-up for free now instead of her set salary.  It was going to just be absorbed into her monthly pay's work which she did every night.

She told them no...  Actually, my father told them "no" with some explitives and got into a fistfight with a man who's still afraid to go to the local bars here because he thinks my brothers and I go there...  So he's suddenly disappeared from any local hangouts, haha.  Puss...

Anyway, they fired my mother then...  She wouldn't take on what would've ammounted to 200% more of a workload for absolutely no increase in pay (a pittance anyway), so they up and fired her...

What's my point?

Well, I dunno, just a "bad experience" with how Unions tend to treat OTHER people working FOR them...  It's no better than the company treats them, sadly. 

The irony?  I'm far from anti-union, just disappointed to see that the NHLPA is so uncaring about anything but themselves, just like my father's union was (Though I'm not the slightest bit surprised either).  It supported my dad when he was sick, but it treated my mother who slaved for them and all their BS, like nothing but the dirt she cleaned.  They are, and forever will remain scumbags to me.

Anyway, just a related annecdote there from my point of view anyway.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2005, 01:04 AM by Jesse James »
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Offline John C

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #463 on: February 18, 2005, 11:40 PM »
Things may not be over yet.  ESPN is reporting that the owners and players have agreed on a $45 million cap.  They are having more meetings tomorrow.  The regular season will be shorter than the playoffs, but some NHL hockey will be better than nothing.  Maybe they should have free games for a week to get the fans back.

Offline CorranHorn

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Re: NHL Offseason
« Reply #464 on: February 19, 2005, 02:26 AM »
This is just downright stupid. Both sides wait until AFTER they've cancelled the season to finally break down and come to terms. What kind of bull**** is this? It just makes the NHL look more and more like the rinky-dink league most people feel it is. Either they should have come to terms prior to this, or they should have worked on a deal and just started the 05-06 season. They've made the asses out of themselves and have done nothing yet to make my apathy go away.

Word also is that the players went into the meetings without union rep Bob Goodenow, so there may be a struggle within the union, which perhaps could mean some disgruntled players?