Breaking Sports

Friday, June 10, 2005

nhl- Moving Slowly

from The Maven and MSG Network, Like the three-toed sloth, NHL and NHL Players’ Association negotiators move forward.
The only problem is that nobody can tell that there REALLY is movement.
After another week of intense meetings – some small, some full-size – both sides in the Civil War at least agree on one thing; they are still talking.
Sometimes, they even talk the same language.
At the end of Friday’s session, NHL Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer Bill Daly went so far as to describe the interplay as “healthy dialogue.”
That includes Vitamins A (Advancing) D (Developing) and E (Envervating.)
“Progress continued to be made on many operational issues relating to a new collective bargaining agreement,” adds Daly.
And to show that he wasn’t kidding, Daly states that meetings will resume “early next week.”
Meanwhile, there has been a disturbing – make that VERY disturbing – media tendency to presume that the CBA only needs some gift wrapping and a neat ribbon; each of which should be available in the next couple of weeks.
My informants – who never have been wrong so far – continually reaffirm that considerable work must be done and, like it or not, the work moves with sloth speed.
“There’s still plenty to do,” one of the insiders tells me. “because, in effect, what we’re doing is – in a hockey, legal sense – re-inventing the system.
“Drafting these documents takes time.”
Ah, but how much time?
My absolute, latest target date for completion is July 15, if advertisers, broadcasters and schedule-makers are to be satisfied. Not to mention the fans.
Is July 15 possible?
“We can always hope,” my insider allows. “It’s possible….”
Then, a cautious pause: “Then again, it may not be!” on...