“I couldn’t be more proud of my association. For once, we weren’t doormats! This statement is that of Antoine Roussel during his column on the show JiC, on TVA Sports.
The robust striker was answering my question about his level of satisfaction with the recent negotiations on the financial framework for the resumption of activities in the National League.
Roussel is limpid, sincere and cultivated. Let’s say that his speech detonates in comparison with traditional wooden tongues. Guys who out of the air are amazing companions and turn into sweet sheep on the air, I could name dozens.
I’m going to let more knowledgeable experts answer that thorny question.
One thing is certain, the numbers speak for themselves. NHL players are the poor relatives of the sport
North American professional. I know that all this seems obvious to you.
Significant increase in income
Yet for the past 20 years, the NHL’s revenue curve has ultimately been the same as that of the other three major North American circuits – Major League Baseball, NFL and NBA.
Hockey lags in total cash flow in a typical season, but its revenue curve has shown sky-high growth in 20 years.
In 2020-2021, had it not been for COVID-19, overall NHL revenues would have reached $ 5 billion, down from below the billion mark in 1999-2000.
However, when we look at the evolution of payrolls and the average salary of the four major circuits, we see that the curve is similar for the NFL, the MLB and the NBA, while that of the NHL is the only one that is to Doctor Arruda’s taste, be smooth …
During the labor disputes of 2004-2005 and 2012-2013, Gary Bettman and his owners obtained significant favors from their players. The latter have each time stupidly bent their backs in the negotiations. Each time, they gave in on essential financial issues. It’s these losses that put players so behind their basketball, football and baseball comrades.
The players hold their own
Except this time the story is different. Gary Bettman is keen to get rid of the last year of a moribund TV contract in the United States, which only brings in 200 million annually.
Despite resistance from a few owners who would rather cancel the season than lose tens of millions, Bettman is pushing for a resumption of operations. The players know this and use it in negotiations. Finally !
It must be said that during the conflicts of 2004-2005 and
2012-2013, the power within the Players’ Association belonged to veterans who had less ahead than behind in their careers. These influencers would bend faster in order to start “collecting” again, or if you prefer to play.
This time around, the owners have come up against the notch of the players they want to promote younger and cheaper … The nuance in the vote of the Players’ Association, it is precisely there.