November 23, 2012 |
NEW YORK - Walking away from the NHL's latest round of bargaining sessions on Wednesday, it would be easy to remain pessimistic about this 69-day labor standoff between the league and its players association by simply listening to the leaders. "We're still far apart," commissioner Gary Bettman said. "The players did an awful lot here," NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr said. Believe it or not, I'm actually more optimistic about some sort of season being played, after letting this week's meetings marinate a bit. They are not close to a deal by any means, but there are positives.
November 22, 2012 |
There were early indications of positive developments as the NHL and NHL Players' Association met Wednesday morning in New York. But when an afternoon session ended, it was clear the sides weren't close to a labor agreement. The NHL rejected the union proposal, and no new talks were scheduled. "I'm disappointed," Donald Fehr, executive director of the NHLPA, said of the league's reaction. He added that the NHL had offered no reciprocity on major issues. Gary Bettman, the NHL commissioner, told reporters that he was happy the NHLPA made a proposal but that the sides were "far apart.
November 21, 2012 |
Andy Reid announced Monday that he doesn't intend to resign his position as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, which doesn't really qualify as news, but the question had to be asked. If there was news, that was it: The question had to be asked. In a forum usually devoted to the moving chessboard of players and the shifting calculus of offensive and defensive schemes, it had become necessary to make sure the coach wasn't going to pitch it all and go tarpon fishing or something.
November 15, 2012
Seven games remain and the playoffs are still a mathematical possibility, but Eagles general manager Howie Roseman is making a list, and it's full of well-paid veterans who could be out of jobs come the offseason. The Eagles are projected to be about $18 million over the salary cap for 2013. Even if they carry over some of the $22 million they're under the cap this season, they will be looking to dump salaries and renegotiate contracts (offer pay cuts). The majority of the team's starters are under contract for next season, with cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie the one notable exception.
November 11, 2012
The people who play simulated hockey games don't know a lockout from a cookout. So the NHL's work stoppage hasn't had any effect on the Strat-O-Matic or the EA Sports hockey universe. In real life, Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov is struggling in Russia and ripping reporters for the "filth" he says they are writing about him. In Strat-O-Matic's simulated games, Bryzgalov is doing well, and there are no reports about any postgame tirades. He has all of the Flyers' wins, helping them start the season 7-3-1, including a 6-1 mark at the Wells Fargo Center.
November 10, 2012 |
Donald Fehr, executive director of the NHL Players' Association, gave two different spins on the labor war with the league. In a letter he sent to players before Friday's meeting with the NHL in New York, Fehr said there was a "significant gap" between both sides. After the meeting, however, he changed his tune, saying the NHLPA does not feel it is as far apart on core economic issues as the NHL says. In any event, the league and the union seem no closer to an agreement than they did in the summer.
October 19, 2012 |
IMAGINE, FOR a second that the NHL's season is a $3.3 billion pound anvil teetering on the edge of a cliff, having been pushed halfway out there by commissioner Gary Bettman. On Thursday, NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr has a magnificent chance to pull the season back from the brink, and finally begin negotiating toward a resolution of this disgusting labor dispute. After the NHL swallowed its pride Tuesday and put on the table what looks like a last-ditch effort to play an 82-game season, Fehr was left with two choices when the two sides sit down for another bargaining session Thursday in Toronto: 1. Use the league's honest-to-goodness proposal as a starting point.
October 18, 2012 |
Privately, many NHL players think the league took a step toward ending the labor dispute when it made a new proposal for a six-year collective-bargaining agreement Tuesday. But that's not the impression given by Donald Fehr in a letter he sent to players after he reviewed the proposal. The letter, which was released to TSN in Canada, shows a lot of negotiating still needs to be done if an 82-game season is going to be played. Fehr, executive director of the NHL Players' Association, wrote that "the proposal does represent movement from their last negotiating position, but still represents very large, immediate and continuing concessions by players to owners, in salary and benefits . . . and in individual player contracting rules.
October 17, 2012 |
A little over a month into the lockout, there is some hope that the entire NHL season can be saved. The NHL on Tuesday offered the players' union a 50/50 split on hockey-related revenue, provided that an 82-game season starts on Nov. 2. The season was originally slated to begin Oct. 11, but it has been shut down because of a labor dispute. "We very much want to preserve an 82-game season," Gary Bettman, the NHL commissioner, said. Translation: We don't want to lose any more money.
October 15, 2012 |
The Eagles locker room seems happier this season as opposed to last. Winning will do that. Despite the popular perception four months ago after Joe Banner stepped down as team president, the locker room didn't suddenly turn into Tijuana when general manager Howie Roseman formally assumed the handling of all contract matters. Roseman had been in charge, really, as far back as February. He, with Jeffrey Lurie's blessing and Andy Reid's counsel, engineered contract extensions for four key members of the Eagles.