At Sportsnet, Michael Grange writes that the group of owners representing the NHL today are likely to deliver the message of how league revenue is growing but how the majority of teams aren’t profitable and player costs need to be cut.
He adds “It’s easy for the players and Don Fehr to suggest that the owners’ apparent intransigence is due to Bettman and his hard-line loyalists. But what if that opinion really is widely held? That even perceived moderate owners are committed to the cause even in the face of growing sponsorship and corporate pressures?”
Nick Cotsonika tweets “Gotta think/hope PA leadership is drilling players on what to say — and what not to say. PA well aware this has potential to get ugly.”
In the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Rob Rossi writes that Ron Burkle, the Pittsburgh owner, won’t back down and stay quiet during the meeting and it will be hard for any other owner to go after him since he is a veteran of “real” labor negotiations and not ones between athletes and owners.
Burkle will speak Tuesday, and everybody on the owners’ side will listen because he commands that level of respect as a businessman.
In terms of Burkle, Elliotte Friedman spoke with one NHL Governor who said that “no wants wants to play” more than him.
Friedman adds, at CBC, that there are mixed feelings about how the owners will approach tomorrow’s board meeting in regard to ending the lockout and wonders if someone, like Larry Tanenbaum of the Maple Leafs did in 2004-05, will step up and argue against ending the season. Tanenbaum was reportedly “shouted down” during his plea.
The meeting starts at 2PM