OK, maybe it doesn’t have to be a total loss for the players


Perhaps my summary of the situation yesterday was a bit much … insisting, as I did, that they are headed for a loss and that they will have to cave for this to get settled.

I still think that the only way this gets settled will be the players accepting close to what the owners want to give them.

Somebody very close to the situation told me yesterday that Donald Fehr will/should view his role as a labor leader and get the best possible deal for his constituents … and not try to get his face on the labor leaders’ Mount Rushmore by refusing to budge.

And that the ultimate deal will/should end up around a 50-50 split of revenues (same as the NBA, better than the NFL) and with that split (which would mean $1.88 billion in salaries) the players will make more money in 2013-14 than they did last season. And that the ultimate agreement could be signed for 8-10 years.

But my worry remains that this becomes a personal crusade for Fehr … that he was hired to not cave in, to fight a strong and, IMO, stubborn fight. I’m not saying the players are wrong here. I’m certainly not saying the owners (or the league) are right. I’m just saying that the players can’t win this fight without compromising, and we should all know that by now.


Before I head off for Yankees baseball duty (yee-ha!), here’s a good read one of our top Boneheads posted last night, from Yahoo.

Also, since we talked quite a bit of baseball during the lockout, if any of youse are interested, it looks like I will be handling some live Yankees chats during the postseason, including some live in-game chats, and will be joining my buddy Chad (Hardest Working Man in Sportswriting) Jennings, who covers the Yankees so expertly, on his blog and on twitter. I’ll pass on details when I have them, and hope you guys will join me there.


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  1. Good luck, Carp. I hope u have fun. And i know u have no rooting interest as a professional journalist, but i hope u hope they win…for me and bc being in an environment like that, being doused with champagne must be one of the best experiences ever.

    And one of the top boneheads?? u mean THE top bonehead! I bet hes up with his daughter right now. Admittedly ive not been around babies much, but ive never seen a dad that loves his child more. Fun, cool inspiring stuff.

  2. AND he was a boxer for eight years and loves coffee. And why would you think sports journalists have no rooting interests in various sports, especially a rabid Ranger fan like Carp? Doesn’t have to affect your objective reporting. Grip up, Tik.

  3. I still say that any requests for clawbacks on current contracts are extremely hypocritical on the owners behalf. By all means make the percentage more fair, 57-43 is very unfair, but that was a system designed by Bettman and his cronies, not the players.
    However, if you’ve just signed a player to a $98m contract then that is that, it cant all of a sudden be turned into a $80-85m contract. If you need to adjust old contracts to make the cap more manageable, for say 2 seasons, then do it too.

    Honour the deals, cut the cap to 53% this year then ease it down to 50% over the next 2 seasons at which point it sticks at 50% and stays for the duration of the deal

  4. Good morning, boneheads!

    That’s what it will probably eventually settle on. Close to 50/50 gradually, with players retaining their current salaries, if not slightly reduced by capping the escrow. That will be considered players concession. The owners will have to compromise on the issue of contract length, ELC restrictions etc. lets all hope they sign a long-term deal, 10 years, as Carp mentioned, would be great.
    UK- same $98M contracts are structured by players and their agents with ridiculous amount paid upfront, and with huge bonuses to protect them from rollbacks. The word “rollback” is something players knew was going to be a possibility.

  5. ilb – i liked this quote from the Globe and Mail yesterday:

    History shows that if the league had incorporated some of the NHLPA’s ideas into the last agreement, they may have been better off in the end.

    Conclusion: Maybe they need to take a fresh look what the NHLPA has on the table – drags on salary increases in the future, plus enhanced revenue sharing – and see if they can plug in numbers that would make it work for them.

    The alternative is to follow a script that hasn’t worked at all – win the negotiating battle and lose the CBA war. The owners got what they wanted in the last two negotiations, but miscalculated their effects, with a poor display of crystal-ball gazing. End result: They are back to the drawing board for a third time, stalled again, and this time, they better get the fix right.

  6. I think if the owners concede the “no rollbacks” point this thing would be over in a matter of days

  7. Dont be a jerk, coos. I made a mistake w the boxer and coffee thing. And Carp has said many times he doesnt have a rooting interest in any pro teams.

  8. well, that is why I posted on here during last season that there wouldn’t be a season and the reason being was because Fehr was representing the NHLPA. I knew there wasn’t going to be a season. I watched Fehr do it when he was the MLBPA. Fehr is a stubborn man, than you add the little greasy rat Buttman and it adds up to no season. I normally wouldn’t care so much but it figures it happens when the rangers were built to win the cup this year.

  9. What the bleep are we going to talk about for the next 12 bleeping months if there is no bleeping season?

  10. Carp personally I think you guys are ALL reporting on the wrong issue. In my mind ILB and UKRanger hit the nail on the head. YOU OWNERS GAVE US THESE CONTRACTS NOW HONOR THEM AS THEY ARE A LEGAL DOCUMENT, AND A BINDING CONTRACT!!! Ultimately the PA knows the percentages will be somewhere around 50/50 but don’t ask us to give money back!!! You sat there at the table with my agent and gave me this contract. You signed it, and in most cases you came up with the numbers. That’s the issue we are dealing with. The PA does not want to loose in both situation, and you can’t blame them. They will give back some percentage, but you signed us to these contracts take them or leave them. You know what??? The more these players go to Europe and now ESPN is going to televise the games……guess what…..the NHL isn’t the only game in town anymore!!!! I totally agree with the players, we will give something back, but were not giving you everything! We gave you a rollback last time, and every time you think the contracts are out of control your going to just have another lockout. Keep it up players it’s not your fault, they gave you the contracts make them stick to it.

  11. If the hockey season is only three months long and the Rangers win the Cup, does it feel like a real victory?

  12. No Chris F, just like when the Devils won that year, it seemed cheap! Just my opinion which I seem to have a lot of today. Sorry guys but this lock out just bothers me, I want hockey but I’m totally on the players side.

  13. Miguel Cabrera won the Triple Crown. First time in the steroid era (over 45 years since the last winner) that a player has won the Triple Crown. Pretty amazing*…

  14. Sorry, Tiki, but I’m hoping for as brief a playoff ride as possible. No interest in a Yankees win whatsoever … and I’ve been in those champagne soaked rooms, and not one of them has been even a little bit pleasant for somebody trying to do work. Especially the one in ’94.

    coos, I know you must have been kidding about me being a Rangers fan, right? What’s the opposite of fan?

    Good morning, Sally!

  15. Carp, I’m not saying you’re wrong, because I have never done it, but you make covering NY sports teams sound like a real drag. Is there any part of it that isn’t a chore? And, yeah, a job is a job, but come on, it’s still writing about sports, not working a toll booth. Or are you just burned out?

  16. Just because Carp isn’t a “FAN” doesn’t mean he doesn’t enjoy covering the Rangers or the NHL…maybe he does….

    He doesn’t bring an emotional attachment…he is objective…it is refreshing…that is why we read his blog and enjoy his comments….

    Being a fan implies emotional attachment and subjectivity to a degree…hard to be a FAN and not favor the team that you root for…

  17. I’m not saying he needs to be a fan of the teams, but wonder why he rarely seems like a fan of his job. He seems pretty negative about a lot of it, and I wonder if that’s just having done it for a long time or feeling like the sports world is a cynical, ugly place. And I don’t mean to be accusatory, just curious because it’s obviously a lot of people’s dream jobs. Not mine, actually. I prefer being a fan.

  18. Chris, it’s definitely a job … that’s all I’m saying. It’s not a drag, and it’s a very good job that I’ve loved doing for 36 years now. But given the choice between working with riduculous deadline pressure for, oh, three weeks or a month of 12-hour days with no days off and traveling to such wonderful cities as Arlington, Texas, and Detroit — or even Ottawa — it’s hardly 100 percent joyful.

    Anyway, covering the Yankees (or the Rangers) aren’t the main part of my job description at this point. So if I had a choice, I’d rather spend the time doing my job, working normal weeks and not traveling.

    That said, if the job calls for me to go through November with the Yankees, or through June with the Rangers, so be it. I’m not rooting for that.

  19. Good afternoon all! That was a great piece Greg!!!!!

    hmmmm, I think this lockout is starting to affect everyone’s moods. Seems to be getting a little nasty, and I don’t mean the good Nasty….lighten up Francis.

  20. Carp: Well put and I totally concur.

    Yes, some owners will be impacted more negatively than others, but the bottom line, as you so succintly put it, is that the owners have more power than the players in that they don’t rely on the game of hockey to put the food on their tables.

    The owners will end up giving in to a certain extent but the players will end up giving in MORE and anyone who doesn’t believe that is either naive or dumb. The real question isn’t how much giving will occur, but how long it will take before the players realize the reality of the situation.

    And in the end, players, their agents and rogue GMs and owners will search high and low for ways to circumvent whatever rules and regulations the CBA brings.

    The players will continue to do well, in other words.

    Just get it done…

  21. Hey, Tiki, did you enjoy seeing Cano pounding his heart and pointing at Big Papi* while the Yankees were celebrating last night?

  22. ZzZz NYR ZzZz©" BUST UP PRUST !!"...says Greg L. on

    For starters I agree with NYR_Fan , Carps no fan . BUT Carp loves us so in reality he cheers for the Rangers secretly while still maintaining his bias edge.

    The owners asking for cash back AGAIN!!?? I agree with Cynar . Thats sick!!

    Heres the answer.

    Players walk away …

    Owners start up with scabs.

    All contracts are honored.

    GMs are fired by owners for escalating salaries.

    Players and Owners so separate ways.

    Owners own the team so players have no say.

    Join or quit. Players are too pampered . Playing for money too many times.

    Make the players come back for the GAME not for money. Famillies will be hurt but only rich ones.

    Players go to Europe to play for more cash . Come to North America for less.

    We only have players and scabs who only care about hockey in the NHL.

    Players only need a few grand a season and if there good , endorsments like the old days.

    BRING on the SCAB RANGERS!!!!


  23. >>Just because Carp isn’t a “FAN” doesn’t mean he doesn’t enjoy covering the Rangers or
    >>the NHL…

    I rather think of Carp as a closet Rangers fan who doesn’t want to admit it in public so that his journalistic objectivity isn’t questioned.

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