NHL Lockout: Why the Players Will Crack Before the Owners

November 6th, 2012 by Nicholas Goss Leave a reply »
The NHL players know they won't defeat the owners during the CBA negotiations in this lockout, but hiring Donald Fehr has given them a stronger chance of getting a more favorable deal than last time.

When the NHL cancelled the Winter Classic last Friday, the league proved that it was serious about making a deal to help its current situation, even if this game is a bigger money-maker for the league than the players. Cancelling the Winter Classic helped the owners show their unity as a group.

Fehr has been given the difficult task of getting the most concessions out of the owners as possible, and thus far, it appears that the NHLPA won't be dominated as badly as they were seven years ago.

If the next agreement includes all existing contracts being honored and a 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue in year one, the players shouldn't view that as a substantial loss.

The players will crack first, but if the owners think that the NHLPA offering concessions is a sign of weakness, they are mistaken. Unlike the last lockout, the players won't accept a deal that includes very little of what they wanted to achieve from the start.
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