NHL Collective Bargaining Agreement In Place, Lockout Over

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It took 113 days to resolve, we will lose 34 games per team, but the NHL and the NHLPA have resolved their differences in principle and have agreed to start the 2013 NHL season.

What does this mean for fans in Buffalo?  Well it means that for 24 nights, the Buffalo Sabres will entertain us at The First Niagara Center.  It does mean that anyone who looks forward to seeing the likes of the Pheonix Coyotes, Los Angeles Kings, or Colorado Avalanche amongst others skate into town – that won’t happen.  An abridged schedule which should be released as teams gather for training camp will only feature Eastern Conference teams, as the shortened season doesn’t allow for interconference play.

Did it really need to take 113 days and half the NHL season to resolve this issue?  Whether it was greed, protection, Donald Fehr, mistrust, no communication – this could have been resolved much faster if hte two sides actually negotiated instead of trading offers back and forth of what they deemed was a good enough deal for the other side to accept.  Toddlers can resolve issues over whose toy that is, or how not to hit/kick/bite faster than these two organization can get things done.  An eleventh hour deal was not necessary at all.

As I was reading up on the news of the day, Ryan Miller‘s apology came across my web browser.  I don’t buy it for a minute.  As outspoken as Ryan Miller was in the media the whole time about the lockout, you could have bene a louder voice among your peers to push the resolution much faster.

I am still embarrassed that we players have such a poor relationship with our league as a whole.

Ryan Miller publicly saying this is a dangerous.  This tells me that the league is out of touch with its employees, the employees have a strong hatred for their owners, and that in 8-10 years, we will be going through this once again.  I can’t take another lengthy and nasty lockout – in 2021-2023 this better get resolved or I will full invest myself in the minor leagues and be completely done with the NHL.

I understand that at some point in a relationship between and employer and a union there are going to be grievances and differences that will cause some strike, but there is no reason that this should be drawn out as long as it gets.

I thought it was funny that the NHLPA was filing the disclaimer of interests so that the players can sue the NHL over anti-trust issues that they couldn’t do as a union.  Technically speaking the NHL could do the same, becuase it is not like they have the option to negotiate with other unions, its the NHLPA or bust.  I don’t know, I just have a bad taste in my mouth over the whole thing.

I am keeping my optimism close to the vest on this one, because the way things have gone, I still foresee a problem – until I see an announcement that the signature are dry on a legit legal and binding collective bargaining agreement, the NHL is still dead to me.

Looking forward to seeing the boys back on the ice soon, and can’t wait to see live blue and gold skating once again.

Topics: Lockout, NHL

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