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NHL releases full proposal; TSN says Fehr's initial reaction to deal is not optimistic

Fehr
NHLPA head Donald Fehr speaks to reporters Tuesday in Toronto (AP Photo)

DETROIT -- The PR battle changed pretty dramatically Tuesday in the NHL lockout.

With no signs of anything cooking, the NHL issued a stunning and wholly unexpected new proposal to try to salvage a full 82-game season. The highlight was a 50-50 split of hockey-related revenues, still a big cut to the players but a point that virtually everyone agreed these negotiations would have to reach.

The league continued on the offensive again today, issuing a full summary of its proposal on NHL.com, along with a detailed explanation of each point.

TSN is reporting, however,  that NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr sent a letter to the players late Tuesday and is not optimistic about the proposal. That's not surprising as there are certainly going to be contentious points. The players, Fehr said, still take a $231 million hit in year one. Fehr & Co. will continue to dissect the deal and the players are scheduled to convene Thursday in Toronto, where we'll probably find out how much traction this deal really has.

Out here in baseball land, where the Tigers are just about done sweeping the Yankees out of the ALCS, there was plenty of talk at Comerica Park about the deal Tuesday night. This is, after all, a place dubbed "Hockeytown."

There are other points the players certainly won't like. Under the proposal, forget big second contracts in the Jeff Skinner or Taylor Hall vein. Entry-level deals go from three years to two and the free agency qualification would move from seven years service/27 years of age to 8/28. 

The players aren't going to like the fact that guys stashed in AHL or loaned to Europe would now count against the cap. So no more deals like Wade Redden or, thinking close to home, Ales Kotalik or Shoane Morrisonn.

This proposal is not take-it-or-leave-it. It's a starting point. We now have negotiations. An offer likely to be met with a counteroffer. Not the this-is-what-you-must take tenor the league has been working under. It's a sign of hope. Does it mean there will be real hockey on Nov. 2? That's the goal. Now it's up to them to hash out a deal.

---Mike Harrington
Twitter: @BNHarrington 

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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl | jvogl@buffnews.com

About Sabres Edge


Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington | mharrington@buffnews.com


Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz | amoritz@buffnews.com

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