SBD/15/Leagues Governing Bodies

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         The talks between the players and owners broke off, and now
    the "ugly stage" is set for the owners to declare a negotiating
    impasse (Alan Truex, HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 12/15).
         IMPLEMENTATION:  Three-fourths of the ownership must vote
    for implementation for passage at today's meeting in Chicago.  It
    will take eight votes to block implementation of the salary cap
    (I.J. Rosenberg, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 12/15).  All reports
    acknowledge that Orioles owner Peter Angelos will vote against
    implementation, while most note that at least one (but maybe
    both) Canadian team will also vote against (Mult., 12/15).  In
    Chicago, Jerome Holtzman adds the Dodgers and Mets (CHICAGO
    TRIBUNE, 12/15).  And in L.A., Ross Newhan adds the Reds (L.A.
    TIMES, 12/15).  Red Sox CEO John Harrington will recommend
    implementation at today's meeting.  Special Mediator William
    Usery has not ruled out going to Chicago "and asking the owners
    to hold off" (Alan Truex, HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 12/15).  In New
    York, Murray Chass notes the developments of the previous 24
    hours could make the owners "take a harder look at the possible
    implications" of implementation (N.Y. TIMES, 12/15).
         WILL IT BE THE CAP?  In Atlanta, I.J. Rosenberg writes,
    "There is a question of what the clubs will implement."  There
    are two sets of proposals on the table, the original salary cap
    and an escalating tax which the owners presented on November 17
         MORE INTERVENTION:  Assuming the owners implement their
    salary cap, the players are expected to appeal to the National
    Labor Relations Board (NLRB) "with the charge that the owners
    have not bargained in good faith, that implementation of the
    owners' proposal was the objective when negotiations began almost
    two years ago."  The NLRB already "came in with a verdict for the
    players" yesterday when it ruled in favor of the union on its
    complaint that the owners were in violation of their contract
    with the union for failing to make a $7.8M payment to the
    players' pension fund (Jerome Holtzman, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 12/15).
    MLBPA attorney Doyle Pryor:  "If we have to file another charge,
    it will already have been determined that they have not bargained
    in good faith" (L.A. TIMES, 12/15).  In Baltimore, Peter Schmuck
    notes with NLRB's pension decision, "the owners may have suffered
    a significant setback. ... The announcement couldn't have come at
    a worse time for the ownership bargaining committee" (Baltimore
    SUN, 12/15).
         WHAT NEXT?  Some owners believe the players will "turn on
    Fehr as they realize how much money he has cost them by leading
    this freedom crusade" (Alan Truex, HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 12/15).
    ESPN' Peter Gammons and Bob Sirkin said "it is very unlikely"
    that Usery will be fulfill his hope to have both sides back this
    weekend ("SportsCenter," 12/14)

    Print | Tags: Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Cincinnati Reds, ESPN, Leagues and Governing Bodies, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Mets, Walt Disney

         Attorneys from the NHL and NHLPA met at an undisclosed site
    in New York, but without the principal players on each side,
    including NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Exec Dir Bob
    Goodenow.  The negotiations "were between small groups with no
    power to strike a deal.  But the lawyers had instructions to see
    if a breakthrough was possible in this situation that has locked
    out players and curtailed the regular season" (Joe Lapointe, N.Y.
    TIMES, 12/15).  One source close to the talks:  "What happens at
    these meetings may determine whether negotiations resume."  It is
    expected that if both sides can identify some areas of
    compromise,  bargaining will resume by the weekend (Alan Adams,
    CANADIAN PRESS/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 12/15).  Bruins Player Rep
    Dave Reid:  "I wouldn't care if Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck were
    there as long as they settled it" (BOSTON HERALD, 12/15).
         IS THERE ANY HOPE?  Agent Rich Winter:  "Baseball left it
    and left it and left it, and I'm sure hockey will leave it, leave
    it and leave it to the last minute, and Bettman will try and
    squeeze out what he can -- he'll take it to the 11th hour" (Dave
    Fay, WASHINGTON TIMES, 12/15).  In Toronto, Damien Cox reports
    some TV officials "have apparently been notified to have their
    cameras and microphones at the ready for Boxing Day [December
    26], although for that to happen a deal would have to come
    together by the weekend" (TORONTO STAR, 12/15).  But the OTTAWA
    SUN is reporting that the NHL "is prepared to offer teams in need
    a line of credit to cover losses during the lockout.  Sources
    said that decision indicates the owners are preparing for the
    cancellation of the season" (Dave Fuller, TORONTO SUN, 12/15).
         TEAM GRETZKY:  Wayne Gretzky, as his traveling all-star team
    closed out its European tour with a win in Germany: "I was taken
    back by the response [during the tour].  It's a clear sign that
    the NHL is accepted here and could be tremendously successful
    over here.  How they want to do that, whether it's a division or
    what, is up to them.  This has opened a few doors for everyone."
    As well as helping the game abroad, Tony Gallagher writes that
    Gretzky also boosted his own marketability.  "He's had millions
    of dollars worth of offers so far, but he's turned down almost
    all, waiting until he returns to carefully select with whom he
    wishes to involve himself" (Vancouver PROVINCE, 12/15).

    Print | Tags: Boston Bruins, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NHL
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