The first set of demands by the NHL for the new CBA agreement have been released, and to say the least they are some really strict demands. Renaud Lavoie released the demands via twitter and straight away fans from across the globe started to take shots at the NHL and commissioner Gary Bettman.
Many sources see a “War” between the NHL and NHLPA a very strong possibility. The sides seem far off and a lockout is possible.
Demand #1: Reduce Hockey Related Revenues from 57% to 46% – This is probably the most criticized demand and rightfully so. This would drop the amount that players make by 11% which is not chump change to say the least. If this proposal wen’t through(Which It Won’t) the players would be making over 360,000,000 million dollars less per year. It would also bring the cap hit down to around 58 million dollars, 12 million less then the current cap. That would mean mean that the Wild would be 11 million dollars over the cap while the Wings would still have 4 million dollars in cap space, enough to make a move at a player. In the end, which is quite far away, I see the revenue sharing ending up around 52% to players and the other 48% to the owners.
Demand #2: 10 seasons in the NHL before becoming a UFA – This is certainly an interesting proposal and something that I wouldn’t be all too much against. Currently players usually become UFA’s when they are around 25, if this wen’t through players won’t hit unrestricted free agency until they are about 28. This is certainly a drastic change and something that I very well could see going through. It would mean that most players that are UFA’s would be entering their prime making them much more lucrative targets.
Demand #3: Limit Contracts to 5 years – I think that we all knew a contract limit proposal was coming but 5 years is way too drastic. I am in favor of the idea as dishing out 13-year contracts is very risky and very costly, however, limiting contracts to 5 years is way to low. The limit should be between 8 and 10 years as this way franchise players can still get tied up long term however no mega deals would be dished out.
Demand #4: No More Salary Arbitration – Most people view this as a good thing and I am one of those people, however, Salary Arbitration does have its pros as well. It forces teams to make a move and would avoid lengthy salary holdouts that we see all the time in the NFL(Brees, Avril, CJ2K, etc…). I do in the end see this proposal going through but it won’t be without its share of controversy.
Demand #5: Entry-level contracts 5 years instead of 3 – A proposal that is very interesting to say the least. This would mean that players won’t be RFA’s at the ripe age of 21 instead at 23-25. It also helps teams as players will be on their cheaper deals for a longer time. I do see this one going through and I also think that this is the best of the proposals by the NHL.
Over the next couple of weeks it will be interesting to see the NHLPA’s counter proposal. The sides seem to be very far off and a lockout may be lurking in the future.
About the Author
Written by Chris Neubacher
Die-hard Red Wings, Tigers, Lions and Pistons fan. Having lived most of his life in Detroit Chris loves sports and respects the city and what it stands for.