There’s a significant gap between the NHL and NHLPA in labor negotiations — and one union member knows what that gap entails.
Pittsburgh’s Craig Adams, one of the 31 players on the NHLPA’s negotiating committee, says commissioner Gary Bettman wants a collective bargaining agreement similar to football and basketball, especially with regards to revenue sharing.
“From the owners’ perspective I don’t know how they view those other CBAs,” Adams told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “I know Gary has mentioned to the press that he looks at those two, and the NHL needs to be closer.”
More, from Rob Rossi of the Trib:
The NHL is believed to crave a revenue split similar to those inked by the NFL and NBA players in the last 12 months.
NFL players are guaranteed only 47 percent of revenues on the 10-year CBA reached last summer. NBA players received a 50-50 split of basketball income on its 10-year CBA that was agreed upon after a work stoppage that wiped 16 games from the last regular season.
“Certainly for the league it behooves them to look at the players’ share in football and basketball and say, ‘We want to be closer to what they’ve done in those sports,’” Adams said.
If the NHL is to go the way of the NFL and NBA, an elongated labor dispute could be on the horizon.
In terms of work stoppages, the NBA delayed starting the 2011-12 season from Nov. 1 to Dec. 25, reducing the regular season from 82 to 66 games.
The NFL didn’t miss any regular season action, but all offseason activity was halted from Mar.11-Jul. 25. There was no free agency or training camp.
Are the Philadelphia Flyers aiming for some sort of record when it comes to expensive (potential) healthy scratches?
While lineups are obviously subject to change, CSNPhilly.com notes that Vincent Lecavalier appears to be among a rather rich group of Flyers who are expected to sit during their season-opener.
Also likely to be in street clothes: Sam Gagner and Luke Schenn.
That’s $11.3 million in cap space rotting on the bench, and that’s only counting what the Flyers are paying Gagner.
“I really don’t know what to say,” Lecavalier said. “I’ll practice hard and be ready when they call me up.”
The CSNPhilly.com quotes from Lecavalier, Gagner and Schenn only get sadder from there, a reminder that there are human beings attached to these numbers – whether you focus on disappointing stats or bloated salaries.
Flyers fans with the urge to reach for an Alka-Setzler can at least take some comfort in knowing that the team will see $6.8 million in savings after this season, as both Gagner and Schenn are on expiring deals.
It could be a long season, though, and this Lecavalier headache may not truly end until his contract expires following the 2017-18 campaign.
One of the NHL’s most notorious hitters has been tagged by the league.
On Monday, the Department of Player Safety announced that San Jose forward Raffi Torres has been suspended 41 games — half of the regular season — for an illegal check to the head of Anaheim’s Jakob Silfverberg.
The length of Torres’ suspension is a combination of the Silfverberg hit and Torres’ history of delivering hits to the heads of opposing players, including Jordan Eberle, Jarret Stoll, Nate Prosser and Marian Hossa.
“Torres has repeatedly violated league playing rules,” the Department of Player Safety explained. “And has been sanctioned multiple times for similar infractions.”
The league also noted that Torres has been warned, fined, or suspended on nine occasions over the course of his career, “the majority of which have involved a hit to an opponent’s head.”
“Same player every year,” Ducks forward Ryan Kesler said following the hit on Silfverberg. “I played with the guy [in Vancouver]. He needs to learn how to hit. That has no part in our game anymore.”
As for what lies ahead, things could get interesting upon potential appeal:
Torres successfully appealed a suspension under the previous CBA, getting his punishment for the Hossa hit reduced from 25 to 21 games.
Under terms of the new CBA, Torres isn’t categorized as a repeat offender because his last suspension came in May of 2013 — more than two years ago.
Of course, part of the reason Torres hasn’t run afoul of the league in two years is because he’s barely played.
Knee injuries limited Torres to just 12 games in ’13-14, and he sat out last season entirely.