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NHL labour talks? Don’t know, don’t care

- August 19th, 2012

From the latest column by Sun Media sports writer Steve Simmons:

There will be no daily update and analysis in this space about collective bargaining issues and the pending lockout in the National Hockey League.

The reason? I don’t care enough about it to render any meaningful opinions.

I can’t make a case for the rich owners and management, who shut down the game for an entire season, got their cost certainty, fixed little in the process, can’t police themselves, charge too much for tickets and take their massive audience for granted.

And at the same time, I can’t make a case for the players, almost half of whom are disposable, roster pieces that can easily be replaced, except they are protected by their guaranteed contracts. Almost anyone who can skate in the NHL is paid $1 million a year. Most are paid more. The sport and its fans would be better served by the Hollywood model: The stars are way overpaid, the extras make next to nothing. And really, when you see Mike Komisarek or Ales Hemsky being paid $45 million combined, well, you understand why ownership and management needs to find ways to police itself.

One more thing about the coming months of daily analysis and speculation about the CBA: Almost all of it will be nonsense. When the NHL went back to work after its most recent lockout, the mainstream thinking was that the NHL won, got its salary cap, got rid of Bob Goodenow. And all was well. The reality: Ted Saskin kicked the NHL to the curb, the players won as they always do, and the franchises that couldn’t make money under the old system still can’t make money today.

Frankly, I don’t care how they choose to eventually divide up their billions. I care about hockey. I care about watching and covering NHL games. The rest, the daily play by play: If you care, you can read about it elsewhere.

Categories: News

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1 comment

  1. R. W. Howes says:

    I totally agree with you. Owners cry the blues but are the ones who offer such ridicious salarys and bonuses to the players then have the gall to complain that they are not making enough money. I have always been a hockey fan for over 60 years and always enjoyed it till lately. It is not the game it used to be, and to be honest I don’t care anymore whether it lives or dies. Too much greed, too much power, and not enough brains to see or care what happens. Both the players and owners need to come back to earth and care about the fans more than their silly pride as they are the one’s who are creating a wreck that is liable to explode. People should just quite supporting professional hockey and watch the kids play that put their hearts into the game. So in fact, I could care less about all the garbage the NHL says or does as it is not worthy of PRINT or even speaking about.

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