Re: What do you guys think of players playing in Europe?
posted at 9/17/2012 7:01 PM EDT
Several player agents surveyed this week said they expect most of their European clients will play in their home countries should the lockout extend into October. Some of their North Americans teammates could then follow suit if it lasts much beyond that, especially with the KHL eager to take advantage of the situation.
For many players, collecting a paycheque – even a much smaller one – while still playing is obviously appealing. Another source of income is also coming in the form of an escrow payment from last season, which could help keep otherwise antsy players accommodated with 6.5 to 8.5 per cent of their 2011-12 salary landing in their bank account in mid-October.
For the average player, that’s another $150,000 to $200,000 or so – or the equivalent of two weeks’ pay – to tide them over. For someone like Ovechkin, it’s closer to $700,000.
Consider, too, that this is a more unified and better prepared group of players lining up behind new NHLPA head Donald Fehr, and those three factors alone (Europe, escrow and financial planning) may push the urgency to get a deal done into November and beyond.
As for where the negotiations stand, the situation is bleak. The league’s latest offer came with an immediate 19.3-per-cent pay cut that has zero chance of being accepted, even before other givebacks are factored in.
Smart move allot of players will be following suit, (Nash and Thornton have signed today for Swedish teams) there is a report Crosby's agent is already searching. Not good for fans though because the players getting Escrow payments allows the NHLPA to dig their heals in.
I was hoping for November start to the season until I found out NBC pays the league no matter if the season is under way or not. Now I am thinking January when players who aren't playing in Europe start to pressure Fehr.