Report: Owners’ first proposal would eliminate signing bonuses

12 Comments

Earlier tonight, we passed along word on the NHL owners’ rather … bold opening CBA proposals. While it’s important to note that this could be a classic example of starting off negotiations with sky-high asking prices, it’s still fascinating to find out these details (even if it makes many of us shiver with lockout fear). The New York Post’s Larry Brooks passes along another interesting detail: owners also want to get rid of signing bonuses and keep salaries uniform throughout a given contract.

Post has learned proposal would eliminate signing bonuses and mandate same salary in each season with 5-yr term limit.

The five points we discussed earlier already displayed varying degrees of absurd, yet eliminating signing bonuses is up there in the “hubris” category. Uniform salaries isn’t quite as crazy (especially considering the wacky disparity displayed in many cap-circumventing contracts), but it might just be the most direct example of owners essentially protecting them from themselves.

(Brooks also points out that the salary cap floor would be closer to the ceiling than it is under current circumstances, which might be the strangest provision without knowing the full context of the proposed salary cap.)

Again, many have pointed out that this first offer shouldn’t be taken too seriously. It’s almost like the Christmas wish list of a naive child; owners basically want a pony, a Playstation 3, their own Ferris Wheel, a full set of action figures and a lifetime supply of pudding.

For those of us trying to avoid lockout nightmares tonight, we just hope that they narrow their list down to some more realistic “gifts.” Asking to get rid of signing bonuses probably ranks in the “pony” category, although for a group that includes some billionaires, perhaps nothing seems too extravagant.