NHL's Shanahan Denies Disciplinary Decisions Have Been Influenced By Outside SourcesPublished May 1, 2012
WHOA, CANADA: The Canadiens in '93 remain the last team based in Canada to win the Stanley Cup, and the GLOBE & MAIL's James Mirtle wrote the drought "has gotten rather embarrassing, especially considering the financial situation of every Canadian team has improved dramatically in the last decade." The seven NHL teams in Canada "are now routinely the league's wealthiest, paying into revenue sharing for newer markets like Phoenix and Nashville on the basis of lengthy sellout streaks and high ticket prices." Demand has "never been higher, despite that lack of winning a Cup, and that in part has brought a team back to Winnipeg and created a movement for two more in Quebec City and the Greater Toronto Area." Once again, no Canadian team "is expected to collect revenue sharing, not even the Jets." Mirtle wrote, "The why behind this trend may not be any more complicated than simply that these franchise are mismanaged. ... What's too often left unsaid is that with the dollar at par, the Canadian franchises have a significant financial advantage and it really should be showing up more on the ice" (GLOBEANDMAIL.com, 4/27).
NUMBERS GAME: In N.Y., Larry Brooks noted just "three of the top nine salary cap teams have made it to the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs -- the Capitals (first), Flyers (second) and Kings (seventh)." The Western Conference Semifinals "feature clubs ranked 22nd, 23rd and 24th under the cap -- the Coyotes, Blues and Predators, respectively." Brooks: "We’re waiting to hear someone on Sixth Avenue construct a cogent argument as to why the current collective bargaining agreement needs be amended in further favor of the owners under the guise of giving 'everyone a chance to win?'" It is "true the cap charge doesn’t equal payroll, and the franchises that carry the league on their financial backs ... can front-load and erase mistakes when other teams cannot, or will not." But it is a "canard that spending ensures success" (N.Y. POST, 4/30).
DEAL OR NO DEAL? In Pittsburgh, Josh Yohe notes with the NHL's CBA set to expire in September, anything from a "smooth agreement to a work stoppage is in play." There is a "sentiment from players that, unlike in previous negotiations, they will emerge on a more even playing field following this deal." Penguins LW Steve Sullivan said, “We made a lot of concessions in 2004. (Owners) got everything they wanted. I don’t know what they could ask for this time.” Yohe writes, "This much is known: Many players are expecting the start of the 2012-13 season to be delayed" (PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 5/1).
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