At TSN, Eric Macramalla writes about the lawsuits that the NHL filed and that the NHLPA could likely file this week and what it really means.
A players lawsuit could put more pressure on the two sides to strike a deal as the NBA and NBAPA reached a new CBA 12 days after the players filed an anti-trust lawsuit against the league.
He writes “As the NHL is not looking to fundamentally change its business model as it did in 2005, conventional wisdom suggests that this should get settled and the NHL should return this season. This lockout, however, has been filled with surprises, and as a result, it’s tough to know when the sides will strike a deal.”
Nick Cotsonika writes “What has NHL’s biggest fear been? That Fehr wants to take down cap. So if PA disclaims and begins process, that’s a sham? So either this whole negotiation is a sham to take down cap, or disclaiming would be a sham to reach CBA. Hmm.”
If in the view of NHLPA there is no more room for compromise, and given the NHL lawsuit, it may well even the playing field and disband—
Eric Macramalla (@EricOnSportsLaw) December 17, 2012
Cotsonika adds a few tweets and says, “Sounds like NHL is daring PA to disclaim for real, declaring it has made best offer, going to court preemptively to prevent sham disclaimer. NHL to players essentially: “OK, boys. Take our deal, or take the risk if you disclaim. What’s it gonna be?” If I’m the NHLPA, I file my own unfair labor charge today, offer to keep negotiating, use disclaimer as last resort.”
Why is NHLPA taking 5 days to vote on disclaimer? To show is real/deliberate decision to opt out of union & not a sham/flip of light switch—
Gabe Feldman (@SportsLawGuy) December 17, 2012
Craig Custance, at ESPN Insider, writes “Ultimately, that’s all this move is — another play for leverage. But it remains to be seen whether that leverage will expedite an agreement or make one altogether impossible.”
Custance also spoke with Dan Cleary of the Red Wings and Shawn Horcoff of the Canucks who said that they expect the vote to allow a disclaimer of interest to pass.