Monday, May 14, 2007

Mo $$$$$, Mo $$$$$, Mo $$$$$, Just not yo $$$$$

You gotta love Union-Thug mouthpiece Larry Brooks. We've already established that what Ol' Lar says one week has nothing to do with what he'll say next week.

Of course he does this again because about a month ago he wrote about a check the Rangers didn't want to write and what was even odder about that was that Ol' Lar seemed rather fine with the Rangers stiffing Holik.

This of course makes perfect sense in light of yesterday's screed where he dictates that the NHLPA ask for the maximum amount of money under the CBA terms for the upcoming season. As you can see from Ol' Lar's numbers this is a difference between between a salary cap of about $49 million to one over $51 million. While that $2 million or so difference may not seem like a lot it could end up being the difference in keeping a player on your team or losing him to somebody else's (resident Genius Lou Lamoriello would love this too).

And of course as you can tell by the tone of the article, Ol' Lar wants this not only because he's a Union-Thug mouthpiece but to also help keep the Rangers together along with adding guys like Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, and/or that scumbag Danielle Briere ( all three if they could). He's sweating it out a little bit because the Rangers were about $3 million under the cap this season and a $51 million+ cap next season will immediately give the Rangers $10 million to play with right away before they make decisions on their 12 restricted and unrestricted Free Agents. Count on players like Brendan "I and I Alone Know What Is Best For The NHL" Shanahan, Marcel Hossa, Sean Avery, Sandis Ozolinsh, Karel Rachunek, Kevin Weekes and Henrik Lundqvist looking for their share of that increase as well.

But there's a big problem with Larry's big plan to push the cap as high as it can go. Yes, it will directly benefit the players in the short-term there is no doubt about that. But we are regaled constantly about the low TV ratings, low ticket sales, and small crowds even in hockey hotbeds like Detroit and Minnesota. The NHL still does not have and won't be getting a lucrative U.S. National TV contract anytime soon to really bring in the $$$$$. So the NHL will have to sell a metric ton of redesigned jerseys in order to keep their revenue streams increasing the way they have been. It is these revenue streams that the cap is based upon and the salary cap has gone up every year now since the NHL has come back from its lockout.

CW says that if TV revenues along with ticket sales and attendance continue to decline, the NHL is going to have a very difficult time in growing their revenue. At some point in time, this Eronesque accounting is going to catch up with the NHL and revenue projections are going to be readjusted in the negative direction. That means lower salary caps and it means players get pinched and pinched hard.

Way to set them up for the fall Ol' Lar!!!!

But if one is a true student of Larry Brooks, they'll remember this gut wrencher from almost years ago now talking about the "triple cap":

"This system will yield less parity, not more. Bank on it. It will yield a tiered league in which the most attractive 12-14 teams will attract free agents willing to take somewhat less money to fit under a cap in order to play in desired locations and for desired managements.

Can't you just imagine the Oilers' recruitment campaign?

Edmonton: When There's No Cap Space Anywhere Else."

So why do the Rangers need the extra cap space Larry? Can't they sell playing on Broadway with Jagr and you covering them on a daily basis?



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