Latest on the NHL CBA negotiations, rules summit examines embellishment, plus the Blues and Wild announce dates for single-season ticket sales.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: Following a two-hour morning meeting between NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, deputy commissioner Bill Daly, NHLPA director Donald Fehr and his brother Steve Fehr, the two sides agreed to cancel yesterday afternoon’s meeting. The two sides will convene today as originally planned.
SPORTSNET.CA: Michael Grange suggests escrow could be a significant issue, as the league could consider that as an option to reduce the players share of revenue without rolling back salaries.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The cancellation of yesterday’s scheduled meeting was taken as a sign by most observers of the lack of progress in negotiations between the two sides. Fehr, however, tried to downplay that yesterday when he met with reporters. I’ve heard suggestions it may have actually been a good thing, getting the main negotiators together to discuss the serious issues without distractions, then going back to confer with their people before today’s meeting.
As for using escrow as a means of reducing the players share of revenue, that’s not going to sit well with the players, who’ve hated the current system of escrow and wouldn’t be keen to see an increase in the amount clawed back from their pay.
VANCOUVER PROVINCE: A lockout could rob an ageing player like Brendan Morrison of an opportunity to prove he still has enough left in the tank for one more NHL season.
CSNNE.COM: Some Bruins players are starting to make preparations in case there’s an NHL lockout this season. There’s a chance players on entry level deals like Tyler Seguin and Jonathan Caron could play for the Bruins farm team. Tuukka Rask could return to Finland (though he hasn’t made any plans yet), Dennis Seidenberg could join his brother in Germany on the Mannheim Eagles, and UFA Mike Mottau claims he’s had “a few concrete offers” from Europe.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: You can read my take on the possible alternative plans of NHL players in the event of another lockout here.
NHL.COM: Frustration over embellishment has become a key issue at this week’s NHL “Rules Summit”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: While penalties are called for diving, I believe stiff fines and suspensions should be implemented if the league truly wants to crack down on embellishment. Otherwise, nothing will change.