It’s Over, The Lockout is Finally Over

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Habs Fans

By Steve Farnham, Associate Editor, All Habs Hockey Magazine

LONGUEUIL, QC. — After 113 days of NHL lockout, and after over 16 hours of negotiating that started on Saturday,and finished in the early hours of Sunday morning (around 4:45am), the NHL and NHLPA have reached a tentative agreement on the framework of a new collective bargaining agreement.

Scot Beckenbaugh, the mediator who worked with both parties throughout the day just might have instantly become a hero for many who feared nothing more than a cancelled NHL season.

“I want to thank Don Fehr. We went through a tough period, but it’s good to be at this point.” – Gary Bettman

The deal is only tentative because all NHL owners and players represented by the NHLPA will need to ratify the verbiage  of the new CBA, which would appear to be a simple formality at this point. (There will be hockey)

Ratification process where the board of governors needs to approve the deal on the owner’s side, while the players need to approve it on their respective side.

“We’ll get back to business as soon as possible.” – Donald Fehr


Details released so far:

Term:

  • 10 years (through 2021-22) with opt-out after 8 years.

Players Share of Hockey Related Revenue (HRR):

  • 50% for all 10 years.

Make Whole Provision:

  • $300M to compensate for reduced player contracts.

Salary Cap Range:

  • 2012-13: $44.0M to $60.0M (Teams can still spend up to $70.2M to ease in the transition)
  • 2013-14: $44.0M to $64.3M

Contract Length:

  • Maximum 7 years for free agents.
  • Maximum 8 years for your own free agents.

Salary Variability:

  • Maximum 35% year-to-year.
  • Lowest year at least 50% of highest year.

Draft Lottery:

  • Weighted system that gives all non-playoff teams a chance at no. 1. (Lottery)

Supplemental Discipline:

  • First avenue of appeal is the NHL commissioner.
  • Appeal can be made to neutral third-party for any suspension of 6 or more games.

2014 Olympics:

  • To be determined outside of CBA negotiations but NHL expected to be in Sochi.

It appears that the pension plan, which had become so dear to the players in these final days of negotiating will be modeled upon the plan used by Major League Baseball.

The date for the start of the season is still to be determined but expected to be around January 15th-19th. The length of the season would be either 48, 50 or 52 games.

The negotiation session ended with a joint press-conference with both Bettman and Fehr, with Bettman thanking Scot Beckenbaugh and Fehr for helping the process get to this point. They did not answer any questions from the reporters who stayed in the hotel lobby for the entire 16, if not a total of 17 hours.

A total of 625 games were sacrificed this season due to the NHL lockout.