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SBD/October 3, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies
NHL Lockout, Day 18: NHL Expected To Cancel Regular-Season Games As Soon As Today
Published October 3, 2012
EVERYBODY TALKS: Wild C Kyle Brodziak said, "Right now, it's tough to see (an agreement). Obviously, somebody is going to have to give in at some point for something to work. As a union, all you can really do is stay together and have your faith in the guys that are leading us" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 10/3). CBSSPORTS.com's Adam Gretz wrote it "does seem hard to take the NHL's stance that the NHLPA has to concede when they are asking for massive reductions across the board." If the league "reduces its share of the hockey-related revenue pie in an offer, it's not conceding anything." It is "just not trying to take as much from the players" (CBSSPORTS.com, 10/2). NHLPA Special Counsel Steve Fehr said, "There did seem to be a little bit of unhappiness on the owners' side of the table about, 'Why aren't we hurrying a little bit more?' To which our response is more or less: 'You're the ones who rushed into the lockout'" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 10/3). Canucks D Kevin Bieksa said, "I don't know how much they value October and November of the season" (Vancouver PROVINCE, 10/3).
DOWN TO THE DOLLARS: In Ottawa, Bruce Garrioch cites a source as saying that of the almost $100M the NHL has suffered in losses with the cancellation of the preseason, he "believes more than $20-million of that pain is being felt by the Canadian clubs." The source estimated that the Maple Leafs and Canucks "are suffering the largest losses" (OTTAWA SUN, 10/3).
FRUSTRATED INCORPORATED: Oilers C Eric Belanger said, "If the owners say they were going to make $100 million in the pre-season games and yet they say they’re ‘losing money,’ that’s a problem right there. Don’t lock us out then." He added, "It’s so frustrating. They’re saying this, we’re saying that. It’s funny to hear Daly talk and say ‘they’ (players) don’t want to talk, they don’t want to talk. It’s always our fault" (EDMONTON JOURNAL, 10/2).
REVENUE SHARING IMPORTANT: The GLOBE & MAIL's Eric Duhatschek notes revenues "may have risen steadily under the last CBA, but it doesn’t change the fact that half the teams in the league are operating in the red." The Coyotes are a "well-publicized black hole, but there are other teams operating in the lower 49 that would be sunk without the $3- to $8-million in annual revenue-sharing subsidies that they received under the old agreement." It would have been "far better off if Bettman had been more open about the warts in the business in the 12-to-24 months leading up to the lockout, rather than constantly glossing over the problem areas" (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/3). Meanwhile, Devils G Johan Hedberg said, "If (the owners) get everything they're asking for, I don't believe the NHL will survive as the best league in the world. I know guys who are saying they won't come back if the NHL doesn't honor the contracts that teams have signed" (N.Y. POST, 10/3).
FANS GROWING IMPATIENT: ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun wrote it is "Groundhog Day in the NHL, and the biggest losers are the fans, who once again are being held hostage by an all-too-familiar script." But the "reaction from fans this time around seems more visceral." The number of fans in the past week "saying they were going to cancel their season tickets cannot be ignored" (ESPN.com, 10/2). In Denver, Adrian Dater wrote, "If I was an NHL season-ticket holder, this would be my tipping point -- a third lockout in the last 18 years." Dater: "I would lock out the NHL from my consciousness permanently in return." What is the "saying for what comes after 'fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me?'" What about the "third time when the same group of people try to fool the fans again?" (DENVERPOST.com, 10/2).