The NHL and NHLPA will meet today with US mediators in hopes of reaching a resolution to their labor standoff.
ESPN.COM: Pierre LeBrun wonders if mediation will work this time around, as it failed to bring about an end to the 2004-05 NHL lockout. Craig Custance, meanwhile, examined some of the issues the mediators would have to address, such as the “make whole” proposal and player contract rights.
TSN.CA: Eric Macramalla examines the mediation process and if it can bring about an end to the NHL lockout.
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: Rangers center Brad Richards isn’t optimistic over mediation bringing the lockout to an end.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the two sides are willing to work toward an agreement, mediation could help bring that about. If one or both are too entrenched in their positions, mediation resolves nothing. Media consensus thus far is pessimistic over the mediators brokering a deal.
YAHOO! SPORTS: Nicholas J. Cotsonika on the influence Marvin Miller, the first head of the MLB players union, had upon pro sports and NHLPA director Donald Fehr. Miller passed away Tuesday at age 95.
CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggarty reports Boston Bruins players have indicated union decertification has been discussed, but all were waiting to have it fully explained. “I’m not really educated enough on decertification to make a comment either way,” said Shawn Thornton. “It’s an option we are aware of, but nobody has really been educated on it.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Based on Thornton’s comments, it appears that option hasn’t been seriously discussed by the players, for now at least.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks provides some clarification on the NHL agreeing to adopt the NHLPA-recommendation of a percentage based system for the salary cap.
“The Post learned yesterday, however, the NHL percentage-based system would have no impact on the calculation of the cap until the midpoint reaches $80 million. The league has proposed a midpoint of $52 million for next season.
The NHL proposal, as confirmed by both the PA’s Don Fehr and the league’s Bill Daly, would establish the ceiling and floor at either 10-percent above/below the midpoint or the current $8 million — whichever is greater.
Thus, the percentage calculation would not kick in until the midpoint exceeds $80 million.”
SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS: The Sharks have begun sending out refund cheques to their season ticket holders, worth 1.8 percent of their investment.
PHILLY.COM: A Flyers season ticket holder wants fans to boycott the NHL season opener whenever the league finally returns to action.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Good luck with that. A more effective protest would’ve been a mass demand for refunds by all NHL season ticket holders, along with fans refusing to buy available season tickets. But that’s not going to happen, either.
NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: The Dallas Stars and Columbus Blue Jackets were among the ten major league sports franchises which suffered the largest drop in attendance over the past ten years.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: The Glendale City Council last night voted to approve a $320 million deal which would keep the Phoenix Coyotes in the Jobing.com arena, pathing the way for the eventual purchase of the club by prospective buyer Greg Jamieson, contingent upon the purchase of the club by January 31, 2013.