Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Is there an end in sight to the NHL lockout?

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 13:  Don Fehr, execut...
I have been reading some of the articles that have popped up in my twitter feed group/list that I created and I am not sure what to make out of some of the tweets and stories that have appeared this afternoon and into this evening.

One of the questions that I think that is starting to come up is did the NHL owners over play their hands and are they finally realizing that the players aren’t going to break? So are the owners ready to crack?
Pierre LeBrun, ESPN.com --- Fehr reiterated to ESPN.com on Tuesday that he believes the league in that meeting Thursday told the NHLPA there isn't much wiggle room on the rest of the deal, apart from "make whole," other than "minor and insubstantial" tweaks.

Not helping things is the growing distrust between the two sides, the controversy over the league’s 48-hour window allowing GMs to talk to players being the latest example. It’s the kind of thing that doesn't inspire either side to believe anything the other side is saying.

Having said that, all rhetoric aside, I believe the ability of both sides to figure out "make whole" is paramount to having any chance of ending this lockout.
This is the article that makes me think that the end to the lockout might be closer than we all think. I mean seriously, we know that there are some NHL owners that aren’t doing that well financially and last year one blog said that there were a half dozen teams that might not make if there is a lockout that lasts for a whole season.
James Mirtle, Globe and Mail --- So the NHL is tired of talking to “a baseball guy” and trying to take its message directly to the players, looking for a sympathetic ear.

Such an end-around isn’t unusual – after all, it happened during the last lockout – but it usually comes as part of an endgame strategy.

Are we that far along already? Maybe.

But this time around it is as much to do with (a) testing the players’ resolve and (b) frustration with NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr’s dour consistency as anything.

It’s also a sign the league is getting a little anxious – and that a compromise that can end this lockout could actually not be as far away as the rhetoric suggests.

What the NHL is really doing here is fishing for weak points in the membership: players who really don’t want to miss paycheques and are willing to consider the not quite 50-50 offer on the table.
I guess only time will tell and here are a few more tweets that popped up tonight, that you can peruse and see what I am talking about.

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