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Sunday, July 03, 2005

nhl- Bitter Pill

from Bruce Garrioch and the Ottawa Sun, Like the unsuspecting victims of an earthquake, NHL players could be blindsided by a major shock.
As the NHL and the Players' Association work toward the finish line of their negotiation -- which may arrive early next week -- speculation is rampant about what the new collective bargaining agreement will contain.
One thing appears certain: It isn't going to be pretty for the players. Not only is their bargaining team going to accept the hard salary cap with linkage to NHL revenues they fought tooth and nail to avoid, they've given in on other key issues. It could amount to a total surrender.
"This is going to be a bombshell for the players," said a league source. "They've done a good job at keeping this quiet, but I believe what the union's executive committee is about to accept is going to be a real shocker for some players."
Multiple sources on both sides told the Sun the deal's framework could look something like this once it is signed, sealed and delivered:
- A hard cap set at 54% of league revenues -- projected to drop by $300 million to $1.8 billion (all terms US) next season -- that will include all player salaries, signing bonuses and performance bonuses. The $2.2 million teams allot for insurance and pension plan contributions won't be included in that figure. The cap could be in the $39 million range, with a floor of about $24 million. There's talk of a dollar-for-dollar luxury tax starting around the $30 million mark, with that money redistributed to lower revenue on...