Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Get it Done!

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As the summer rolls on, it is becoming more and more important for the NHL and NHLPA to get a deal done. With one of the most successful NHL season's behind them and new fans eager to see more NHL action in a few months, the NHL needs to ensure that a deal is done in time for the NHL season to start as scheduled.

Their are encouraging signs. Both NHLPA Executive Director, Doanld Fehr and NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman say that they are optimistic about reaching an agreement, even though there's lots of work to be done.

Gary Bettman says the talks have been "constructive" and "positive". That's good to hear but the two sides need to capitalize on this positivity. These things find ways of unraveling quickly. As mentioned in previous posts, the NHL can't afford for NHL games to be cancelled or a season to be scrapped. That would be disastrous.

I'm confident that both sides understand the stakes and will work out a fair deal. That's important. I hope both sides come out of the negotiations being happy with the deal that will eventually be reached. The longer negotiations go on, the greater the chance is that one or both sides will be angry at or resent the other side.

The best thing that the players and ownership can do, is embrace the success of the 2011/2012 season. Let's move on and capitalize on last season. The NHL and NHLPA should be marketing the 2012/13 season. They should be drumming up support for their league. They should be reaching out to sports fans and showing them why hockey is the greatest sport in the world.

The NHL trails the NBA in popularity as the 4th highest rated of the 4 major North American sports leagues. The 2012 playoffs and the LA Kings Cinderella season, helped to bridge the gap. I think the NHL has something going here but I fear that they will screw it up if they can't negotiate a contract soon!

So the NHL needs to get a deal done and they need to do it now!

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