Report: Fehr wonders if NHL offer is 'serious'


Report: Fehr wonders if NHL offer is 'serious'

After hearing cautious optimism in the initial day the NHL offered up a 5050 deal to the NHLPA in their lockout negotiations, NHLPA Exec Director Donald Fehr didnt sound enthused in a subsequent letter to players and agents.

The letter detailed over 1.6 billion in lost revenues over the course of a six year deal with an option for a seventh year as first reported by while lauding the NHL for making marked improvements from their previous offers. Fehr also wondered aloud to his membership whats in it for the players as NHL ownership is still asking for across the board salary cutbacks and contract reductions while raking in 3.3 billion in revenue.

Some of the content from Fehrs letter courtesy of TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie:

"Simply put, the owners' new proposal, while not quite as Draconian as their previous proposals, still represents enormous reductions in player salaries and individual contracting rights," he wrote. "As you will see, at the 5 per cent industry growth rate the owners predict, the salary reduction over six years exceeds 1.6 billion. What do the owners offer in return?

"The proposal does represent movement from their last negotiating position, but still represents very large, immediate and continuing concessions by players to owners, in salary and benefits (the Players' Share) and in individual player contracting rules."

Fehr also openly wondered in the letter if the NHL offer was more PR move than CBA olive branch, but he vowed to soldier on with negotiations before potentially putting out their own offer in the coming days.

"We do not yet know whether this proposal is a serious attempt to negotiate an agreement, or just another step down the road," Fehr wrote. "The next several days will be, in large part, an effort to discover the answer to that question."

The NHL later released to the public the full offer sent to the players on Tuesday, but NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly denied that it was in any way connected to Fehrs letter becoming public.

Spooner responds positively to healthy scratch


Spooner responds positively to healthy scratch

BOSTON -- It wasn’t perfect by any means, but Saturday night represented a step in a positive direction for Ryan Spooner.

The 24-year-old speedy forward was scratched for the home opener against New Jersey in classic message-sending fashion by Bruins coach Claude Julien, and deserved it based on a passive lack of production combined with some costly mistakes as well. So he stayed quiet, put in the work and then returned to the lineup Saturday vs. the Montreal Canadiens where he scored a power play goal in the 4-2 loss to the Habs at TD Garden.

“He was better,” agreed Claude Julien. “He was better tonight.”

Spooner could have had even more as he got a couple of great scoring chances in the first period vs. Montreal, but Carey Price was able to turn away a couple of free looks at the Montreal net. So the Bruins forward felt he possibly left points on the ice after it was all said and done, but also clearly played his best game of the young season after going from the press box back to the lineup.

“Yeah, I had like maybe four or five [chances] that I could have scored on,” said Spooner. “I’ve just got to bear down on those [scoring opportunities], and a lot [of them] in the first period. It’s good that I’m getting those looks, but I have to score on them.

“I’m just going to go out there and just try to play. I can’t really think about [fighting to hold a spot]. I’ve just got to go out there and try to play, I guess, the game I can and try to use the speed that I have.”

The Spooner power play strike was a nifty one with the shifty forward and David Backes connecting on a pass across the front of the net, and the young B’s forward showing the necessary assertiveness cutting to the net from his half-wall position.

Spooner had five shot attempts overall in the game, and was one of the few Bruins players really getting the chances they wanted against a pretty effective Montreal defensive group. Now it’s a matter of Spooner, along with linemates Backes and David Krejci, scoring during 5-on-5 play and giving the Bruins a little more offensive balance after riding Boston’s top line very hard during the regular season’s first couple of weeks. 

Sunday, Oct. 23: Hall fitting in with Devils


Sunday, Oct. 23: Hall fitting in with Devils

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while waiting to find out which Walking Dead character got brained by Lucille in last season’s cliffhanger. I’m going with Abraham.

*The SI roundtable talks about the future of Jacob Trouba, and where he’ll end up going when his current situation resolves itself.

*P.K. Subban is apparently getting very comfortable in Nashville, and enjoying life in a city with NFL football.

*Fun conversation between Yahoo’s Josh Cooper and Brad Marchand about a whole range of random topics.

*A cool father-son story where they became the goaltending tandem for the Ontario Reign through a series of dominoes falling after Jonathan Quick went down with injury for the Los Angeles Kings.

*Pro Hockey Talk has Taylor Hall serving as exactly what the New Jersey Devils have needed for the last couple of years.

*For something completely different: FOH (Friend of Haggs) Dan Shaughnessy says that the MLB playoffs couldn’t have played out any worse for the Boston Red Sox.