With all the meetings that occurred last week and over the weekend, many were expecting some sort of forward progress. Well it seems that the progress has stalled. The NHL seems to be delaying the advancement of a CBA because they want to work out the kinks of accruing revenue over a shortened season.
“In addition to sorting out the division of revenue and player contracting rules, the NHL and NHL Players’ Association must also decide how to deal with the financial implications of playing a shortened schedule once an agreement is reached.”
“It has an impact (on talks),” NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr acknowledged Friday night.
This wasn’t a concern during the last round of negotiations because the NHL we proposing an 82 game season. But now, a total of 210 games—and all of the accompanying revenue—would be lost for good. When you combine that with the damage this lockout has already inflicted on the NHL’s overall business, it’s clear that whatever can be salvaged of the 2012-13 season won’t generate anywhere near as much as the record US$3.3-billion brought in last year.
The NHLPA is asking the NHL to build the framework for the new CBA around an 82 game season and then work out the details of a shortened year 1.
It is time that they all realize, although they probably have, that the longer they wait to get a deal done for their fans, the smaller that revenue bank account will become until it eventually disappears.