Friday, May 11, 2007

It's Their Party...

and Ted isn't invited anymore.

Far be it from me to tell these guys what they can and cannot do with their union but unless there's something more than e-mail snooping (which isn't a violation of privacy) going on the NHLPA is making a big mistake in getting rid of Saskin.

Here is the guy who negotiated a deal that gives them a guaranteed $475K a year (which will grow to $525K at the end of the deal). He saved the mandated 10% raise for players making under $660K and a 5% raise for players under $1 million. (I on the other hand, didn't receive any kind of raise this year because of a situation that had nothing to do with performance).

Yet the players are throwing him under the bus because of e-mail snooping? I'm sure some of them are angry about the salary cap, but consider this, the Salary Cap started out at $39 million for 2005-2006 and is projected to be about $47-49 million for 2007-2008. That would be a $10 million (26%) increase in just two years in a league that relies entirely upon ticket revenue. That my friends, is nothing short of incredible especially when CW says that the NHL shouldn't have been able to grow itself that quickly after throwing an entire season away the way that they did.

What is even more mystifying if you ask me is that these guys put up with (and in some cases even idolized) Bob Goodenow who by all accounts was an overbearing tyrant. I guess they preferred an in-your-face guy over a guy who conducted his operations in secret or were just tired of having their lives and contracts micro-managed.

But if the players want to be stupid, they can be stupid. Just remember this the next time your favorite team raises ticket prices or you lose a star player not so much because of cap considerations but because they're asking for a salary that the team cannot justify.

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