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Why mediation means very little

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08:24 AM ET 11.27 | Wish much luck to Scot L. Beckenbaugh and John Sweeney, who are likely going to need it. Those are two of the men who got the call on Monday from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service to try to help bring an end to the NHL lockout. While it is excellent news that the NHL and NHLPA have recognized that their negotiations are going nowhere, the involvement of the United States government does not guarantee that there will be a settlement in time to save the 2012-13 season, or a settlement at all. ... [If] the sides follow the lead of their mediator, going private is a good thing, too. Good things are nice, but there still is a lot of work to be done, and no assurance that any of this will work.

Sporting News

Gary Bettman, Getty Images Gary Bettman, Getty Images
November 27, 2012  08:30 AM ET

Some Is Better Than None, Bros.

November 27, 2012  08:39 AM ET

Consider if you will, that when Cohen and co. joined the NFL lockout talks in February that a deal did not get settled until July. So by that logic, we'll have a deal done by May... wait...

That and the fact that the NFL was a tad less contentious than the NHL when it comes to labour talks, and we could be sitting down a little while longer than that.

Off-topic a little, but has anyone else seen the stories about Serato (one of the original announced debate team), it actually brightened my mood for about 15 seconds until he was dismissed for some rather odd tweets, that brought the notoriety in the first place. ah well...

November 27, 2012  08:40 AM ET
QUOTE(#1):

Some Is Better Than None, Bros.

The saying "Too much is never enough" comes to mind to refute this, but actually backing that with facts would require too much effort.

November 27, 2012  08:44 AM ET
QUOTE(#1):

Some Is Better Than None, Bros.

Like brains, huh Bro?

November 27, 2012  08:52 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

Like brains, huh Bro?

think he got the "straw" end of the deal...........

Comment #6 has been removed
November 27, 2012  09:17 AM ET
QUOTE(#6):

Not sure where you got you info that the NFL talks were less contentious than these, but it's obviously not the case. If mediators or arbitrators are deemed necessary, the talks were/are very contentious.This particular action is rather meaningless for two reasons; 1. the players are not interested in making a deal that doesn't look just like the last one and 2. it's not binding arbitration.See you next season.

What are you telling me that ownership and the league are less reviled than Goodell and co.? That's not the feeling I get, but everyone has their own opinion on it. Also, I didn't say that the NFL negotiations lacked contention, but they don't seem as contentious as these negotiations seem to me.

Comment #8 has been removed
November 27, 2012  09:36 AM ET

I'm no expert on labor negotiations.....these or any others.......but I do think I was (unfortunately) right a while ago when I said that the Fehrless Leader was going to have to prove his manhood by being "tough" throughout the discussions. I don't have any love for the management side of the argument either. But, there is no financial risk to players if attendance tanks for example or a new arena can't get built.

My position is simple:

1. Ownership should stand behind all contracts signed prior to September 15, period.
2. The currently offered 50-50 split on HRR is comparable to both the NFL and the NBA.
3. Revenue sharing, at least to the extent of ticket revenue, product sales, and national contracts ought to be done.
4. I think the NHLPA and the League should be working hard on health issues both for current and retired players.
5. The League ought to be solely responsible for divisional make-uos and league scheduling.
6. Finally, a 5 year term for the new CBA is ridiculous on its face. Why start this again in 5 years. Personally I think both the NHLPA and the League should appoint a manageable number of participants to a body which permanently attempts to tweak issues in the CBA so we don't come to another one of these pointless stops.

I'll guarantee you that when this debacle is finally over it will end under terms that could easily have been reached last summer.

November 27, 2012  09:46 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

I'm no expert on labor negotiations.....these or any others.......

You're right about that but .... you still manage to raise some interesting points.

November 27, 2012  09:51 AM ET
QUOTE(#10):

You're right about that but .... you still manage to raise some interesting points.

LOL. That's why I get paid the big bucks for my assistance. Zero! Exactly what my advice is worth!

:-)

November 27, 2012  10:02 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

I'm no expert on labor negotiations.....these or any others.......but I do think I was (unfortunately) right a while ago when I said that the Fehrless Leader was going to have to prove his manhood by being "tough" throughout the discussions. I don't have any love for the management side of the argument either. But, there is no financial risk to players if attendance tanks for example or a new arena can't get built. My position is simple:1. Ownership should stand behind all contracts signed prior to September 15, period.2. The currently offered 50-50 split on HRR is comparable to both the NFL and the NBA.3. Revenue sharing, at least to the extent of ticket revenue, product sales, and national contracts ought to be done.4. I think the NHLPA and the League should be working hard on health issues both for current and retired players.5. The League ought to be solely responsible for divisional make-uos and league scheduling.6. Finally, a 5 year term for the new CBA is ridiculous on its face. Why start this again in 5 years. Personally I think both the NHLPA and the League should appoint a manageable number of participants to a body which permanently attempts to tweak issues in the CBA so we don't come to another one of these pointless stops.I'll guarantee you that when this debacle is finally over it will end under terms that could easily have been reached last summer.

Consider me firmly in your corner

November 27, 2012  10:24 AM ET
QUOTE(#12):

Consider me firmly in your corner

He might be so inclined to welcome you with a better choice of words.

Comment #14 has been removed
November 27, 2012  11:09 AM ET
QUOTE(#6):

1. the players are not interested in making a deal that doesn't look just like the last one and

right, and the owners are not backing up the contracts they signed in good faith. See Parise and Suter

November 27, 2012  12:29 PM ET
QUOTE(#14):

The players are making a big to do about the make whole part of the new CBA and I agree with them and you, but none of them would ever agree to legally, contractually do the same thing with their own contracts. As in, you signed a contract for X dollars and X years. You will play out the contract in its entirety, not hold out for more money if your performance leaves you feeling underpaid.

Agree with this and Slappy's OP. I would only add "and dont threaten to go to the KHL" or someother backwater to get out of your contract. If you sign it, honor (honour) it.

November 27, 2012  01:08 PM ET
QUOTE(#9):

I'm no expert on labor negotiations.....these or any others.......but I do think I was (unfortunately) right a while ago when I said that the Fehrless Leader was going to have to prove his manhood by being "tough" throughout the discussions. I don't have any love for the management side of the argument either. But, there is no financial risk to players if attendance tanks for example or a new arena can't get built. My position is simple:1. Ownership should stand behind all contracts signed prior to September 15, period.2. The currently offered 50-50 split on HRR is comparable to both the NFL and the NBA.3. Revenue sharing, at least to the extent of ticket revenue, product sales, and national contracts ought to be done.4. I think the NHLPA and the League should be working hard on health issues both for current and retired players.5. The League ought to be solely responsible for divisional make-uos and league scheduling.6. Finally, a 5 year term for the new CBA is ridiculous on its face. Why start this again in 5 years. Personally I think both the NHLPA and the League should appoint a manageable number of participants to a body which permanently attempts to tweak issues in the CBA so we don't come to another one of these pointless stops.I'll guarantee you that when this debacle is finally over it will end under terms that could easily have been reached last summer.

Well thought out, and I agree

On this one I also have to agree with KDF though when it comes to this: "Can't disagree with any of that Slappy, but I do have one bone of contention concerning #1 and no one ever brings it up.". No-one ever does.

That will be a sticking point for many players that signed before the lockout, and this is contingent on whether the owners choose to renege on the deals already concluded and signed.

November 27, 2012  04:12 PM ET
QUOTE(#16):

Agree with this and Slappy's OP. I would only add "and dont threaten to go to the KHL" or someother backwater to get out of your contract. If you sign it, honor (honour) it.

But you are being locked out from honoring your contract by owners, no?

November 27, 2012  04:21 PM ET
QUOTE(#13):

He might be so inclined to welcome you with a better choice of words.

It did make me a trifle uneasy. :-)

 
November 27, 2012  04:25 PM ET
QUOTE(#14):

Can't disagree with any of that Slappy, but I do have one bone of contention concerning #1 and no one ever brings it up.The players are making a big to do about the make whole part of the new CBA and I agree with them and you, but none of them would ever agree to legally, contractually do the same thing with their own contracts. As in, you signed a contract for X dollars and X years. You will play out the contract in its entirety, not hold out for more money if your performance leaves you feeling underpaid.I'm also no big fan of revenue sharing, but I have large degree of ambivalence about it so........................

I agree with you too in principle Rex. But since we don't live in a perfect world...........let's handle that one later (yeah, right). The lack of players willing to stick with their own contracts is true in all sports leagues and irritates me as much as the errors of the league management in the NHL.

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