Word across twitter currently is the NHL has stepped up to the table with a legitimate offer to the NHPA this morning. Details are still filtering through but it seems the main points are:
1.) A 50/50 split of hockey related revenue. Apparently the split is based on current definititions of HRR, which short circuits a lot of potential new fights and headaches.
2.) The league would strive for a full 82-game schedule to be played this year (starting Nov. 2).
This is the first ray of light to break through the heavy clouds of posturing and rhetoric that has hung over the NHL’s labour negotiations this off-season. The league dropping a re-definition of HRR and breaking the 50% mark is a big potential step forward. Indications that the league could still squeeze in a full schedule are also encouraging.
There are, of course, far more details and issues to work out, including how the league plans to cut the players down from 57% of revenues to 50%. Fehr and the NHLPA have been very resistant to deep salary rollbacks to existing contracts, so that could be a primary roadblock. Darren Dreger has more on that issue here.
In addition, it’s unknown how other contract issues were changed or affected by the NHL’s proposal (UFA age, entry level contract status, amnesty buy-out clauses, etc.).
Still, it feels like the two groups might actually start talking about real solutions here…