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Monday, July 04, 2005

nhl- The end is Near

from the Edmonton Sun, The last time, there was the big press conference in New York with Gary Bettman and Bob Goodenow posing for a ''Don't blink or you'll miss it'' photo-op wearing "Game On'' hats.
Will there be another of those this week with Bettman and Goodenow putting on hats with "A Whole New Game'' logos?
It's hard to picture. Goodenow might not have a head to put it on.
There's every expectation that the War of 2004 is near the end. It's gone from months to weeks to days, and now there's the belief it's down to hours.
This morning, probably for the last time, negotiators and lawyers will catch their final flight from here to New York before the deal is done, subject to ratification.
Just the fact they're going back at it today - the Fourth of July in the U.S. - indicates they plan to get it done this week.
At least one rights-holding TV network has sent e-mails to it's reporters and cameramen to not take any days off this week, not make any plans, in expectation of a flurry of DD-Day (Done Deal Day) media blitzing.
But will there be a big media event in New York? Or will there be a simple statement, subject to ratification, followed by sourced stories and leaked information as owners, management, agents and players look at the new deal?
Will the big media event follow in a week or two with an announcement of the once-in-a-lifetime draft lottery plan, release of the 2005-06 schedule, new rules, and detailed confirmation of all the highlights of a ratified deal?
However it shakes down, the day this deal is done, it's going to be open season in a dozen different directions....more...