The National Hockey League made true on its’ word that it would lockout the players last Sunday when the Collective Bargaining Agreement expired. This was to be expected… after all, most owners believe they are paying the players too much money. What’s the excuse when former Tampa Bay Lightning player – Sean Bergenheim – was signed by the Florida Panthers for double what his old contract paid him? Other players have multi-year, multi-million dollar contracts. Who is handing these out? The owners. Yes, I said the owners are. I have not heard of one owner who has said to their General Manager not to hand out the contracts they are inking players to.
NHL economics is clearly broken. The last CBA shouldn’t have been signed by the players, and then- NHLPA Director, Bob Goodenow warned we would be faced with what we have today back then.
Now, we have a problem where the players have been given contracts worth alot of money… more money than I’ll ever see in my lifetime. They also have a share of NHL revenue based on how well the league performs. The NHL is at an all-time high in it’s popularity level, and is making alot of money. However, this popularity and money doesn’t mean all markets are performing to their potential or to where they want to be.
Look at the New York Islanders… Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum clearly needs a major makeover. Madison Square Garden went a transformation, so it’s time for this arena to get the same. The Dallas Stars are losing alot of money also. Those are the two teams that come to mind off the top of my head. There are others that are in the same boat.
I have been watching from the sidelines… as every fan is. Some fans are very upset, while others are taking the wait and see approach to the 4th lockout (3rd under Gary Bettman). I do alot of research and get information from various sources, and I will say that if we rush into a new CBA to get the 2012-13 season under way, we will find ourselves in another lockout less than ten years from now.