I’m sure after I post this some detail will come out that completely flips it on it’s head. Such is the way. I’m also going to try and keep emotion out of this, as hard as it may be, to try and clearly see what the problems are.
Both McClure and myself have not called on the players to somewhat acquiesce to what the owners want because we think they are wrong. Anyone would be pissed off if your boss came to you and told you they wanted to take back part of your salary simply because they wanted to. It’s certainly not fair or what you’d expect any decent person to do.
We call on them to do that because of what reality says will happen. A lockout is not enacted by people who have any intention of breaking. It’s not a suggestion. You don’t put someone on the rack and then stop when they tell you it hurts and apologize. You have a result in mind, and you squeeze and inflict pain until you get it. And they’re going to get most of what they want. That’s how this works. The players seem to think they can win this. They can’t. And they’re still chasing a win, not a deal. Until they do the latter, we’re going to be in this Winter of Our Discontent.
I’m not surprised by the NHL walking out today. It’s probably what was always going to happen as they seek to apply pressure before this first, pretty soft deadline of next week to get a full schedule in. Whether that deadline is enough for the players to face the truth I highly doubt. When a season at all comes under serious risk, that’s what I think it will take.
I don’t want to get into the nuts and bolts of all three proposals they apparently came in with today, and we don’t even know most of them. But the third one. Oh, the third one. That’s the one where the players offered to take that 50-50 split as along as every dollar of the contracts signed were paid. No escrow, no nothing. Now obviously on the surface, that sounds like a no-brainer. Pay me the money you signed to pay me. That’s the way the world works, right?
But it can’t work like that in a world where who gets what is determined by a projection. Now, it’s also not fair for the players to fully bare the brunt of that security protection. It doesn’t seem right that if projections aren’t met, the owners just cash in on the escrow to make up for it and the players are out. But certainly there’s a medium to be met here, some sort of even-split just on that issue that could be hammered out if both side weren’t intent on displaying their tail-feathers to attract a mate.
Let’s also add this. If the players are so intent on getting very dollar on their contracts now, but still want a system based on HHR projection, you’ll get this:
Rookies and draftees hopefully got the number of the bus they were just thrown under in proposal 3
— HawksCap (@HawksCap) October 18, 2012
Someone is going to have to pay for that protection, and it’s going to be anyone who signs a contract after this. So all the players belching up some stump-speech about how they’re doing this to protect those that come after them? See if you can see their eyes turning brown? They’re just trying to save every dollar they can for themselves, and they could give an airborne fornication for 2013’s draft picks.
But again, that doesn’t mean that the players are totally in the wrong here either. The NHL can’t expect a steep cut to 50% after just one year. That’s a drop of 10 mildo in the cap and if you’re a free agent next summer god help you. A temporary soft-cap would help solve this, one that goes from say the 57% now to 54% and then the straight 50%. You could even add a tax to it or something.
In the end, there’s still lots to talk off of from each sides’ proposals. But that’s only if they’re interested in talking instead of winning and getting PR points. They don’t seem to be at this point. And that hurts.
Because both sides have to wonder what the world will look like if they cancel a lot of this season and how a reduced the pool of money can be split. And they don’t seem to be. I guess they don’t care.
I know I’ll be here when they get back because I kind of have to be. But all of you? I wonder. I really wonder. And I seem to have a better finger on the pulse of the fans’ ire than either #TheChildren or #TheThumbDicks do.