Red Line, Blue Line, Bottom Line: How Push Came to Shove Between the National Hockey League and Its Players
- 176 pages, 5×8 inches
- Price: $16 CAD · $16 USD
- ISBN: 9781554200115
- Date published: 2004-09-30
- Availability: in print & available
About Red Line, Blue Line, Bottom Line
The showdown between the NHL team owners and the players has been brewing for years.
The owners claim they lose millions of dollars annually due to escalating player salaries courtesy of free agency, and threaten to lock the players out of NHL arenas for the entire 20042005 season if they dont accept a salary cap.
For their part, the players are dubious about the owners claims of financial ruin. They ve heard that song before. They believed it when it wasn t true: as a result, for many years hockey players earned by far the lowest salaries of major league athletes. Now that theyve surpassed National Football League salaries, even if they still trail their contemporaries in basketball and baseball, NHL players are reluctant to give back their hardfought gains. They want to keep the free market system and they point out that nobody forces owners to pay inflated salaries for free agents.
The last time push came to shove in this dispute a decade ago, the owners canceled half the season without getting the "cost certainty" they are still seeking. This time they re promising to wipe out the entire year, with the result that many players are signing on to play with European teams this season. Could this be the death of the NHL?