Jason Gregor
December 14 2012 01:08PM

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was named captain of Canada's World Junior team this morning. It is a huge honour for him, and it will be a great opportunity for him to evolve and grow as a leader. Considering the lockout negotiations are moving slower than a snail, I doubt the Oilers will have to worry about making decision whether to recall him back to the NHL or let him play the entire tournament.

But if that option comes up, it will be a hotly debated topic.

Do the Oilers owe it to Hockey Canada to let him stay?

Do they owe it to their organization to ensure they ice the best possible lineup every night in the NHL?

Both sides have merit.

It seems unlikely that this scenario will unfold, and Nugent-Hopkins will hopefully get the best of both. He will captain team Canada for the entire tournament, and then return to the NHL in time to start the season.

If the NHL lockout does end early, which I doubt, I imagine we will have an epic debate on what the Oilers should do with Nugent-Hopkins. For me it would be hard to pull him out if the tournament has already started.


The NHLPA has asked for a full membership vote that would grant the NHLPA board the authority file a disclaimer of interest.

What does this mean?

Essentially it would allow the board to dissolve the union. And once the union is dissolved then players could file antitrust lawsuits in an attempt to get an injunction to end the lockout. The players could also win a lawsuit for damages as well.

How is this positive you are probably wondering?

It is positive Friday so I looked at the most recent history of "disclaimer of interest" and it didn't derail negotiations between the NBA and the NBA.

There is a difference between disclaimer of interest and decertification.

Sports legal analyst Micheal McCann wrote an article that outlined some of the differences last year pertaining to the NBA.

From what I gathered here are the main differences:

Decertification is not an immediate event, nor is it instantly reversible. It is "more serious" and would need to be recognized by the National Labor Relations Board.

Disclaimer of interest (DOI) can happen quicker, and most importantly, it contains retractable steps for the players. Basically a DOI allows the players to sue instantly, but isn't as permanent as decertification.

It seems this is another bargaining tactic. I'm immune to any tactics being more vile than the next, and if this tactic leads to a resolution I'm all for it.

Last year the NBA filed for their DOI on November 14th, but on December 8th the NBA lockout ended.

Ironically today is December 14th, and since it is Positive Friday it must mean we will see a resolution by January 8th. Remember, positive vibes my friends, positive vibes.


Yesterday we raised an amazing $4,500 for Santas Anonymous. A huge thank you to Darrell and the gang at Jet Label for their generous bid on the GM/COACH dinner package at Von's Steakhouse. Awesome.

Today's package includes....

  • A signed Nail Yakupov blue and orange jersey. (Or Justin Schultz, your choice)
  • The jersey will be framed courtesy of proamsports.ca
  • A party for 10 at the Pint.
  • A pair of gold seats to Oilers game in 2013.


One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
#51 Time Travelling Sean
December 15 2012, 05:29PM
Trash it!
common sense wrote:

Hey buddy, are you in elementary school. The entire league had gross revenue of 3.3 billion. Take away 57% for player salaries and then some more for other expenses and you get a net profit that is only in the millions and of which only a handful of teams made. Read the Forbes review of the NHL teams to get a glimpse of how the teams are doing financially. Most are not doing great at all. Why am I reiterating the obvious. This has all been noted before.

Nice question mark at the end of your condescending question applying that someone has the mentality of an elementary grade student.

#52 Mike
December 16 2012, 01:15AM
Trash it!
Kent Wilson wrote:

The problems with the Islanders, Coyotes, etc. are long range, systemic issues that won't be cured with the current "solution" of narrowing the players share to 50% of revenues. The Coyotes lost close to $60 million last season, for example. A new salary cap of $60M rather than $70M doesn't even make a dent in their financial problems. Heck, there's evidence that the last CBA made things worse for them thanks to the existence of a salary floor.

Bad markets or bad business strategy can't be waved away by shaving your employee costs.

Which isn't to say I don't understand why the NHL is insistent on this course of action - another 7% of 3.3B is a $230M wealth transfer after all - but I'm guessing most of that money ends up in the pockets of the middle-to-big market teams again.

I totally agree, and in my mind the key question is actually pretty simple: Is the NHL as a whole measurably more successful because it has 30 teams?

If yes, the answer is revenue sharing, because the struggling teams provide a net benefit to the league as a whole.

If no, contract them.

The richer owners want the best of both worlds - a 30 team league that somebody else pays for.

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