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NHLPA Admonishes Canucks C Kesler Over Contract Comments
Published March 25, 2009
|Kesler Admonished For Suggesting
Players Take Below-Market Contracts
MAJOR ISSUES: Kelly said that the one thing that has "galvanized the players' thinking recently" regarding a new CBA is the "massive escrow payments that are murdering their paycheques." Kelly: "We're finding every time we meet with the players there is more and more interest in the issues facing us and the league. They want to know more and more, and the thing that's really got their notice is the high deductions from their cheques this season." Meanwhile, in Vancouver, Tony Gallagher reports ESPN "wants hockey back big on that channel, with a view to putting some games on ESPN2 and a few on the mothership, including playoffs and the Winter Classic," though "how soon this comes about remains to be seen." Kelly said in terms of national media revenues per season, the NFL is at $3.7B, MLB at $1.37B, the NBA at $930M and the NHL -- with RDS, CBC, NBC and Versus -- is at just $225M. Kelly: "There's a lot of reasons for that but it's the single biggest drawback we're facing in the league right now" (Vancouver PROVINCE, 3/25).