Fehr delivers sobering news to NHL players

Fehr delivers sobering news to NHL players
November 9, 2012, 12:30 pm
Share This Post

Don’t start warming up those vocal cords just yet, Caps fans.

While it's significant that the NHL and its players are meeting today for the fourth straight day and some progress has been made in negotiations on a new CBA, a memo sent to the players by union chief Don Fehr suggests the two sides are farther apart than any of us would like to believe.

In his letter to players Thursday night, which was obtained by our colleagues at Pro Hockey Talk, Fehr makes it painfully clear that there is a "significant gap" remaining in the owner's "make whole" provision and that the owners have rejected the players' proposal to gradually drop their share of revenues to a 50-50 split in Year 3 of the deal.

Instead, the owners want an "immediate reset" to 50-50 while keeping their other contract restrictions such as extending the right to salary arbitration by one year; extending unrestricted free agency to age 28 or eight years of service; and limiting contracts to five years.

"In short, the concessions on future salary we have offered (at least $948 Million to $1.25 Billion over five years, depending on HRR growth) are not enough," Fehr writes. "We are still being told that more salaries must be conceded, and that very valuable player contracting rights must be surrendered."

"So, while we are meeting again, and while some steps are being taken, there is still a lot of work to be done and bridges to be crossed before an agreement can be made."

So what's your take on all of this? Do the players want too much? Are the owners being fair? Do you think there will be a season? Join the conversation below: