The Battle is On

- October 17th, 2012

The NHL has released its proposal. Here is copy.
The NHL wants to make sure the players see it:

The National Hockey League issued the following release Wedneday:

Following is the full text of the NHL’s offer for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement in order to preserve a full, 82-game season that the National Hockey League presented Tuesday to the NHL Players’ Association (along with the accompanying commentary and descriptions also provided to the NHLPA). While the original intention was not to release the details of the offer publicly, not surprisingly there have been widespread reports attempting to describe and characterize the terms of the offer that understandably are incomplete. As a result, we believe that full public disclosure at this stage is both necessary and appropriate.

See a detailed explanation of the proposal

NHL PROPOSAL TO SAVE 82-GAME SEASON

1. Term:

• Six-year Agreement with mutual option for a seventh year.

2. HRR Accounting:

• Current HRR Accounting subject to mutual clarification of existing interpretations and settlements.

3. Applicable Players’ Share:

• For each of the six (6) years of the CBA (and any additional one-year option) the Players’ Share shall be Fifty (50) percent of Actual HRR.

4. Payroll Range:

• Payroll Range will be computed using existing methodology. For the 2012/13 season, the Payroll Range will be computed assuming HRR will remain flat year-over-year (2011/12 to 2012/13) at $3.303 Billion (assuming Preliminary Benefits of $95 Million).

• 2012/13 Payroll Range
Lower Limit = $43.9 Million
Midpoint = $51.9 Million
Upper Limit = $59.9 Million

• Appropriate “Transition Rules” to allow Clubs to exceed Upper Limit for the 2012/13 season only (but in no event will Club’s Averaged Club Salary be permitted to exceed the pre-CBA Upper Limit of $70.2 Million).

5. Cap Accounting:

• Payroll Lower Limit must be satisfied without performance bonuses.

• All years of existing SPCs with terms in excess of five (5) years will be accounted for and charged against a team’s Cap (at full AAV) regardless of whether or where the Player is playing. In the event any such contract is traded during its term, the related Cap charge will travel with the Player, but only for the year(s) in which the Player remains active and is being paid under his NHL SPC. If, at some subsequent point in time the Player retires or ceases to play and/or receive pay under his NHL SPC, the Cap charge will automatically revert (at full AAV) to the Club that initially entered into the contract for the balance of its term.

• Money paid to Players on NHL SPCs (one-ways and two-ways) in another professional league will not be counted against the Players’ Share, but all dollars paid in excess of $105,000 will be counted against the NHL Club’s Averaged Club Salary for the period during which such Player is being paid under his SPC while playing in another professional league.

• In the context of Player Trades, participating Clubs will be permitted to allocate Cap charges and related salary payment obligations between them, subject to specified parameters. Specifically, Clubs may agree to retain, for each of the remaining years of the Player’s SPC, no more than the lesser of: (i) $3 million of a particular SPC’s Cap charge or (ii) 50 percent of the SPC’s AAV (“Retained Salary Transaction”). In any Retained Salary Transaction, salary obligations as between Clubs would be allocated on the same percentage basis as Cap charges are being allocated. So, for instance, if an assigning Club agrees to retain 30% of an SPC’s Cap charge over the balance of its term, it will also retain an obligation to reimburse the acquiring Club 30% of the Player’s contractual compensation in each of the remaining years of the contract. A Club may not have more than two (2) contracts as to which Cap charges have been allocated between Clubs in a Player Trade, and no more than $5 million in allocated Cap charges in the aggregate in any one season.

6. System Changes:

• Entry Level System commitment will be limited to two (2) years (covering two full seasons) for all Players who sign their first SPC between the ages of 18 and 24 (i.e., where the first year of the SPC only covers a partial season, SPC must be for three (3) years).

• Maintenance of existing Salary Arbitration System subject to: (i) total mutuality of rights with regard to election as between Player and Club, and (ii) eligibility for election moved to five years of professional experience (from the current four years).

• Group 3 UFA eligibility for Players who are 28 or who have eight (8) Accrued Seasons (continues to allow for early UFA eligibility — age 26).

• Maximum contract length of five (5) years.

• Limit on year-to-year salary variability on multi-year SPCs — i.e., maximum increase or decrease in total compensation (salary and bonuses) year-over-year limited to 5% of the value of the first year of the contract. (For example, if a Player earns $10 million in total compensation in Year 1 of his SPC, his compensation (salary and bonuses) cannot increase or decrease by more than $500,000 in any subsequent year of his SPC.)

• Re-Entry waivers will be eliminated, consistent with the Cap Accounting proposal relating to the treatment of Players on NHL SPCs playing in another professional league.

• NHL Clubs who draft European Players obtain four (4) years of exclusive negotiating rights following selection in the Draft. If the four-year period expires, Player will be eligible to enter the League as a Free Agent and will not be subject to re-entering the Draft.

7. Revenue Sharing:

• NHL commits to Revenue Sharing Pool of $200 million for 2012/13 season (based on assumption of $3.303 Billion in actual HRR). Amount will be adjusted upward or downward in proportion to Actual HRR results for 2012/13. Revenue Sharing Pools in future years will be calculated proportionately.

• At least one-half of the total Revenue Sharing Pool (50%) will be raised from the Top 10 Revenue Grossing Clubs in a manner to be determined by the NHL.

• The distribution of the Revenue Sharing Pool will be determined on an annual basis by a Revenue Sharing Committee on which the NHLPA will have representation and input.

• For each of the first two years of the CBA, no Club will receive less in total Revenue Sharing than it received in 2011/12.

• Current “Disqualification” criteria in CBA (for Clubs in Top Half of League revenues and Clubs in large media markets) will be removed.

• Existing performance and “reduction” standards and provisions relating to “non-performers” (i.e., CBA 49.3(d)(i) and 49.3(d)(ii)) will be eliminated and will be adjusted as per the NHL’s 7/31 Proposal.

8. Supplemental and Commissioner Discipline:

• Introduction of additional procedural safeguards, including ultimate appeal right to a “neutral” third-party arbitrator with a “clearly erroneous” standard of review.

9. No “Rollback”:

• The NHL is not proposing that current SPCs be reduced, re-written or rolled back. Instead, the NHL’s proposal retains all current Players’ SPCs at their current face value for the duration of their terms, subject to the operation of the escrow mechanism in the same manner as it worked under the expired CBA.

10. Players’ Share “Make Whole” Provision:

• The League proposes to make Players “whole” for the absolute reduction in Players’ Share dollars (when compared to 2011/12) that is attributable to the economic terms of the new CBA (the “Share Reduction”). Using an assumed year-over-year growth rate of 5% for League-wide revenues, the new CBA could result in shortfalls from the current level of Players’ Share dollars ($1.883 Billion in 2011/12) of up to $149 million in Year 1 and up to $62 million in Year 2, for which Players will be “made whole.” (By Year 3 of the new CBA, Players’ Share dollars should exceed the current level ($1.883 Billion for 2011/12) and no “make whole” will be required.) Any such “shortfalls” in Years 1 and 2 of the new CBA will be computed as a percentage reduction off of the Player’s stated contractual compensation, and will be repaid to the Player as a Deferred Compensation benefit spread over the remaining future years of the Player’s SPC (or if he has no remaining years, in the year following the expiration of his SPC). Player reimbursement for the Share Reduction will be accrued and paid for by the League, and will be chargeable against Players’ Share amounts in future years as Preliminary Benefits. The objective would be to honor all existing SPCs by restoring their “value” on the basis of the now existing level of Players’ Share dollars.

Categories: Hockey

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18 comments

  1. Pav says:

    If the players do not take this deal they are out to lunch. I read somewhere that Fher will try to get it to a 52\48 split.

    The comment from him yesterday was ‘its a good start’… does anyone else want to slap him?

    I am fully on the NHL owners side. The players need to smarten up.

    Take the deal and get back to playing. There are people living pay chq to pay chq that need hockey to come back. Smarten up a$$es!

  2. Potter says:

    Pretty well played by Bettman I would say. The highlights, and the overall package appear to be pretty reasonable but I am certain I will be finding out how unreasonable it is later today or tomorrow. Speaking of Mr Fehr, I will be curious to find out how much he wants to make a deal, or if the “win” is more important.

    I am also curious as to when the rank-and-file union members will be polled. IMHO, the deal that is on the table, with a few tweaks (mostly to save face) would be enough to get a majority, but not if the vote is restricted to the player rep’s: heard a few of them on TSN last night, they all seemed to be reading rehearsed lines (Fehr-ese) and had a somewhat militant tone.

  3. Bobby Goodman says:

    Indeed Potts (Ferh-see….very good). It does confuse me how some owners do not like the proposal…how does that work? Can Smug Smurph table a proposal without all the owners on board?

    Interesting choice of words too Potts when you ask if the “win” is most important. When the win is game and not a mutually beneficial partnership, there will always be hostility. It still drives me batty to think that these privlileged men who have been so blessed can harbour such resentment to those who have paid them gaudy sums.

    I think if we are going to be honest, we musy condede that most of them don’t give a damn about the fans (who make them rich and think them to be KIngs and Gods), nor do they they care about the many who are without work because of the work stoppage and the many businesses that rely on games being played.

    I will watch the games when ultimately they do return to the ice but admit I have lost all respect. To hear Bieksa and Gionta last night was enough to make me ill. It has gotten so bad, I find the Brian Obama and Nut Romney contest more interesting (is it me or has CNN made their choice…).

  4. ChokerHater says:

    That smug (um Bruce deleted bad word here) didn’t play it quite as well as he thought, this time he’s negociating with a pro
    but really, who cares, so far I haven’t missed it, I guess I will come the new year, but maybe not

  5. Brian says:

    I couldn’t care less about what is in any of the offers. The fact remains that the players were willing to keep playing during negotiations and the NHL chose to lock them out. End of story. The NHL owners and management are a disgrace.

  6. Bobby Goodman says:

    I suspect we will not be seeing NHL hockey this year; it is a shame but I care less with each passing day. I suspect the owners are willing to lock the players out as long as it takes to meet their goal(s). I am not a big fan of the owners at all but like politics, it is the lesser of two evils. As I have said often, if the players feel so jilted by the most recent offer and their collective disposition is one of anger and resentment I have a solution, form your own league.

    Indeed, Bieksa and company can absorb the associated costs and logistical issues of building arenas with access roads and parking etc. They can negotiate with the CHL and conduct drafts (I don’t thinks so), have minor league teams. They can negotiate deals for broadcast rights of games on TV, Radio and various media. They are so inteligent, they can build their managment teams, with reach to discover talent across the pond. And when all is said and done and I haven’t even scrtched the surface, Bieksa and company can pay the players in their new league millions of dollars with outstanding insurance coverage, pension plans et al.

    Hell it must be easy? The players, with their new league will be compassionate owners/bosses and truly care about the individuals who need the jobs associated with games being played (live or on TV, Radio etc.). They will epathize with all those who directly or indirectly earn money because of the hockey including restaurants and bars…but wait! They don’t give a damn now and…many are overseas taking jobs away from kids who actually need the work to pay the bills. So, why would they suddenly become compassionate. When Bieksa and company are too old to play anymore, would they ever agree to a 57/43% split in revenues,13 year multi-million dollar contracts? I suspect they wouldn’t.

    I am confused why Bettman is the Commish today when he is the one who negotiated the 57/43 deal but the owners agreed! Perhaps it took them 8 years to finally realize that something wasn’t quite right. I don’t bother reading the details of the deal because entire affair is an embarrassment; instead of showcasing the best game and hockey players int he world the owners and players are demonstrating how disfuntional the relationship between the bodies can be. They are playing out in real life the NHL version of Jersey Shore where self centered, egotistical and nim witted fools shamlessly demonstrate to the world what entitlement really means.

    I am interested in Bingo now and wish we got more coverage in the Sun (yet another story about Silfverberg). I got some news guys, there are other stories to tell. Boro is plus 3, leads the team in penalties and tonight against Syracuse, the team will need him (the Crunch score goals and are very tough). The PP is inept. The team is not scoring a lot of goals and I did expect much more but the season is young. Hey, but Sly wants to follow Alfredsson’s career patch…well son, good luck with that!

  7. ChokerHater says:

    (um Bruce deleted bad word here) the word is the same as you do to your finger to draw blood
    but I getcha Bruce….all clean here

    @Brian, the fact of the matter is, if the owners let the players play, they would have played until around the playoffs, then went on strike, ruining the whole year, there is no way as an owner I’m going to let that happen. By locking them out, the owners prevent the fans from saying, all that money they spent on tickets all year was a waste because the season never finished, I don’t blame them one bit, and I’m not on the owners side, I’m on the fans side, if they can’t guarantee me an ending, I don’t want the first halk

    THEY CAN ALL GO TO
    heck ;)

  8. Bobby Goodman says:

    Do you love Boro or what? Not only did he stand up for his team mates against one of the toughest teams in the league (Syracuse Crunch) with 3 majors, but he also scored a goal and is now plus 4! He was plus one in a 6-5 loss! It looks to me like Boro is alone on this team as it relates to toughness. Now HE is a tough Canadian boy. He needs some support though…it is like Neil being all alone in the Stanley Cup Final in ’07 when Bryan Murray decided no to play the league’s best fighter and heavy weight, McGratton, in a single game.

    I wonder why Cowen was out and I hope he isn’t hurt.

    The PP is horrendous and they had ample opportunity to put the game out of reach but could not capitalize as much as they should have with many opportunities with the man advantage. After being ahead by a lot, the team allowed the Crunch back in it…did most of these goals come when Lehner was ejected?

    Sly got an assist but was minus 3 and Da Costa is delivering exactly what I expect from him, not a hell of a lot; he was minus 2. Zibby led the team with 6 shots and got an assist which is outstanding. The Hoff is now on a roll and you had to believe it was going to happen eventually; before last nights game he led the team by a large margin in shots and I think it was 15! I hope that Petersson can now get it going, he did get two assists last night. I am disappointed with his stats so far but…the year is young.

    It is difficult to get information and I have to grind it out to find info on the Net. I really do wish we could get some coverage by our newspaper. Candid, honest coverage. I found an article written by a girl who obviously writes for Syracruse and in the same article she calls the game boring and exciting….

  9. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Brian, let me take you back to the mid-90s. Major League Baseball is in a labour dispute but the players agree to keep playing. Nos Z’Amours, the Montreal Expos are looking absolutely spectacular. What happens? Their Player Association leader, none other than Donald Fehr, calls a strike and the post-seaon goes POOF! and a little later so do the Expos. NHL owners are no fools. They KNOW that Fehr will pull the plug on the playoffs if need be to get what he wants and THAT is why there will be no games played until the owners are happy.

    As for Fehr, I get the feeling he is just out to “correct” the last lockout, it is all he ever talks about. Granted, the current CBA came from that, but it’s time to move forward.

    As for our next Hall of Famer Silfverberg, I am nonplussed. He plays well and he has a Golden Helmet (that and $5 wil lget you a coffee and donut at Tim Horton’s) but Aeden Helmer (through Randy Lee) is telling us this kid is going to win the Calder Trophy, be a Selke finalist, score over 1,000 points, bring the team ot a Cup finals and two Conference Finals, be a King Clancy winner, a Lady Byng finalist and be top 5-top6 in Hart Trophy voting?

    Ok.

    All I know is I’m ready to do the SEL “Oooooooh Aaaaaah Silfverberg” chant just as I am ready to do an “anti-chant”. It’s up to him what we in the crowd say, but my expectations are now sky-high as we have a future Hall of Famer in Silf, a new Scott Stevens in Borowiecki, a new Adam Oates in Da Costa and Luke Richardson thinks at a thousand (or is it a thousand?) miles per hour. We’ll see, but if the team can’t get past the first round in the near future then it’s time for a new GM who will take a look to this roster, step on some toes if needed and get us the playoff performers we’ve been needing since 2007!

  10. Bobby Goodman says:

    Regarding the Binghampton Senators, I would love to know what the line combinations are; can anyone help. We have been reading lots about Zibby and Sly playing together with Pageau….but not a single word about the other 3 lines…you have to wonder why? Since we get squat about the boys in Bingo, I will share what I have read. David watches many and may have a better perspective than I, but here goes:

    Mike Hoffman is now tied for team lead in scoring with 4 pts in 5 games and plus 2 (he had 7pts in 2 games in the pre-season but that didn’t merit a line in the papers).
    Mark Stone as a 20 year old has been outstanding, he also has 4 pts and is plus 2! His pts are all assists which is a testimony to his all round skill (I would love to know about his skating).
    David Dziurzynski is a big strong Canadian boy and he looks good with 3 pts in 4 games and + 2.
    Andre Petersson is SLOWLY putting it together with 3 pts in 5 games (another point in the 2-1 OT victory vs Hershey but -1 and no goals).
    Mark Borowiecki is now plus 5 after 5 games. He plays very physical, plays many games and he never gets hurt (a tough Canadian boy and will take him over Gilroy, Methot, Lundin. Philips, Wierchoch anyday)
    Jakob Silfverberg has 1g and 1 assist and is minus 2 after 5 games (but he gets a lot of ink, now liking him to Alfredsson…the season is young however).
    Mika Zibanejad has 2 assists is 0 in +/- (I don’t think he will ever be a goal scorer which is not a knock at all…a good and perhaps great 3rd liner though but certainly not deserving of all the hype that has been heaped upon him by Timmie-boy).
    Stephane Da Costa in 3 games has no goals, no assists and is minus 3 (he is delivering exactly what I expected)
    Eric Gryba = bum
    Blood = bum and has been demoted

    I/we will have to wait for a game against the Marlies to see them on television.

  11. Bobby Goodman says:

    Dan, it looks like a Detroit vs San Fran World Series. It looks like they have abandonned the graphic showing balls and strikes…perhaps it revealed just how frequently the Umpires (who have a tough job) get it wrong. Instant replay needs to be deployed. The calls on the bases are horrible (again, a tough job that could be made easier and errorless.

    Watching Zeto throwing the ball between 70 and 84 mph and baffling the Cardinal batters was fun. He likle Glavin plays in the black. There are pitchers and throwers. It is interesting how throwers who lose 8mph on their fast ball become pitchers. I have always wondered why they couldn’t do both. I have only seen one do it and he was my favourite; Nolan Ryan didn’t throw at batters heads like the Drysdales and Kofax’s of the world. He was throwing the ball in the mid to high 90s in his 40s and he had the off speed stuff and curves that would paint the black. He like many in his time, pitched in a lot of games/innings during the course of the season. We will see fewer and fewer 20 game winners and may never see another 300 game winner. Their teams shut them down now! Shame…

  12. Daniel Murphy says:

    I noticed as well the lack ball strike graphic although they did show it a few times late in the game. TBS had the rights to the first round and they went with the full time ball strike graphic indicator. FOX had the rights to the conference finals and decided not to use the graph except in specific situations late in the game. Nevertheless the baseball playoffs have been good.

    When exactly did pitchers become fragile wimps? When I grew up pitchers pitched every 4th day. They also were expected to go 7+ innings. Now they go every fifth day and if you get 5 innings out of them, it is deemed a quality start. Remember when Baltimore had 4 -20game winners. (Dobson, Palmer.McNally and Cuellar). A thirty game winner is now impossible due to less starts (approx only 35 per year) plus the specialization of relief (long and short) pitching resulting in starters getting yanked in the 5th and 6th inning resulting in no decisions quite often. I am a Leyland fan and I love the enthusiasm of Fielder and the talent of Cabrera however how can one not root for the Giants after their recent comebacks.

    I

  13. Mike8888 says:

    Hey Bobby,
    This is Blood’s first season out of college. Are you going to give up on him early like you did Cowan? My son played against Borocop many years ago in summer hockey. He really didn’t stand out at that time. I believe he’s achieved what he has with a lot of hard work.

  14. Bobby Goodman says:

    Mikey, I know you are smarter than that. I never, ever gave up on Cowan, but, I have often said for his size, he doesn’t punish players, he has slow feet and is slow making decisions. He needs to keep his game simple. Does that sound familiar to you at all?

    Tell me Mikey, what is it you really like about Ben Blood? List the attributes that have impressed you and the organization. Afterall, he is 23 years old now. I have indicated often that an overwhelming percentage of NCAA hockey playrs that play more that two years never make it in the NHL for the simply reason, they are not wanted and…they would postpone their education for the promise of financial reward if they were good enough!

    The guys I have been chastised for giving up early on included: Daisey the Air Rifle (and where is he now), Da “Oates-like” Costa, Rund’sbad, Dawg (who the paper now concedes he not have a job with the Sens should the season ever be played), Obrien (no one knows where he is), The Missing Klink, Gilroy, Butler…

    I am curious, how old was your son when he and Borowiechi went to hockey camp together. I have seen youngsters star as kids and fade when they get older and I have seen others who were invisible and morph into stars as they matured. Camps are great but they rarely showcase a players true potential. Hard work is certainly a prerequisite for success but there has to be much more.

    It is not surprising that a tough Canadian defenceman who punishes the opposition with his body and his fists, leads his team (Bingo) in plus minus (+5). He did the same last year on the worst team in the entire league…no mystery here. I love offensive defencemen no question about it, but, I am not a fan of one dimensional rovers who stand still in their own end always on the perimiter waiting for scraps. I have always hated plyers who go down easy and fake injury. I have played with some and I find is a disgrace. I concede that some of these guys are imensley talented but a team wont win consistently with them and they certainly will no win when the games are very tough in the post season. I would take a Doughty any day of the week. The opposition needs to know they aren’t going to get a free ride when they cross the blueline, venture into a corner or stand in front of the net! When Ottawa allowed Carkner (with his extremely bad knees) to go and sign a 3 year deal with someone else, they made the team significantly softer than it already was. They did find money to sign OmyGodbrien and the Dawg though.

  15. Bobby Goodman says:

    Perhaps Danny-boy, they are taking Money-ball a little too far. Strasberg was shut down for the season as his team entered post season play! I heard a retired pitching great suggest that the kids shouldn’t be throwing curve balls until they are much older because it only serves to put stress on a young elbow…I agree with him. Learn to throw it hard (just like golf, learn to hit it long) you can always learn the other stuff later.

    I enjoyed the graphic for each pitch. I don’t know how a batter can deal with 30 different umpires and potentially 30 different strike zones…as you said, it is 2012. If deployed, we viewers wouldn’t have to see the graphic and only hear the call by the umpire (just like we do today only….correct calls). What is bad about that?

    Bob McGowan (with his signature sunglasses in the studio) is an idiot…really. I heard him asking Anthopolous why he allowed Farell to go. The answer was the ex-Blue Jay Manager had expressed for two years his heart was in Boston and if that is where he truly wants to be, why hold him back…does the team need someone who does’t really want to be there?! On top of that, the Blue Jays got a fine ball player to replace Johnson at 2nd base in return! McGowan said he would hold Farell to his contract or suspend him until his contract was finished. Anthopolous asked how that would benefit the Jays and Mr. Kool said it would earn the team respect etc. As a GM, I would suggest you want to make friends not enemies. He did Farell a favour that wont be forgotten and Farell’s best friend is the Red Sox GM. Don’t burn a bridge I say (I know because I have burn many most have come back a bite me in the ass) you never know when you will cross paths again and they may be in a position to be friend or foe. As for McGown, he has his radio show and is popular for some inexplicable reason and promtes the notion that he rubs people the wrong way and doesn’t real give a damn. Now that must make many interested in tuning him in….not!

  16. PaV says:

    The players are stupid for not taking the deal. I wonder how many of them wanted to take the 50/50 deal that the NHL offered.

    If I was the owners, I would not budge and see if they take 30% when they have lost the majority of their pay chqs.

    ALSO the players who make a semi-circle around Cher.. sorry Fher at his press conferences look like tools in suits.

    The players need to smarten up.

  17. Mike8888 says:

    Bobby,
    I’m just not ready to give up on kids just because they played 4 years of college. My son was around 12 or 13 and played against Borocop in so called summer AAA hockey. (not really AAA) Who cares about Rundblad, Murray turned him into Turris, and if Rundblad is as bad as you say, that would make Murray the second coming of Sam Pollock.

  18. Bobby Goodman says:

    Right on Pav. The players do feel entitled but I have to wonder, do they have solidarity? Good Union members do not take jobs away from others. It woud be interesting to know how many are truly circling the Farlly Brothers. When players talk to the owners to get “clarity” there is a big problem.

    Chris Stevenson wrote a great article today and pointed out that Fehr did the deal for major league baseball. Teams like Boston and certainly the Yankees can buy the best talent available. The NHL, with a hard cap that cannot be exceded (ala Yankees) distinguishes good GMs from the bad and as a result, parity is alive and well in the NHL.

    I don’t know if the players need to smarten up as much as they need to grow up. They are losing money that will never be recovered. I know the multi-millionaires don’t care as much as the 80% who are not. Solidarity…I don’t think so buddy.

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