Breaking Sports

Sunday, July 03, 2005

nhl- Another week or So

from Larry Brooks and the NY Post (reg. req.), According to sources, it's likely to take until at least the end of this week — if not into the middle of the following week — for the NHL and NHLPA to reach an accord they can present to their respective constituencies for ratification.
Which means that the league isn't likely to officially reopen for business until approximately July 18-20.
To repeat: as we reported on June 19, 2004-05 contract obligations have been eliminated in their entirety. Any suggestion otherwise is fraudulent.
Contract extensions, we've learned, will not alter cap charges on existing deals. We're told that the PA expressed concern over the possibility of clubs approaching players with requests to restructure contracts by deferring considerable amounts of money over an extended period.
The two-line offside pass as we know it will be eliminated when play resumes in the fall. Players apparently will be allowed to make the home-run pass upon crossing a line at the top of the defensive-zone circles.
In addition, we're told that in the coming NHL world of the shootout — that, if necessary, will follow 4:00 of 4-on-4 OT and 3:00 of 3-on-3 — teams will receive 0 points in the standings for losses of any kind.
It's unclear whether the plan is to award teams 3 points for winning in regulation, or whether all winners will receive the heretofore standard 2.
We know of at least one GM who, in conducting contract talks with his coach, referred to an additional four teams being added to the playoffs. The subject, as you can imagine, was raised in conjunction with negotiation of a playoff bonus.