PENALTY BOX – After nearly four months of negotiations, countless arbitration meetings, and five boardroom-clearing brawls, the NHL Players’ Association and league owners agreed to a profit-sharing deal that will fairly distribute the $115 the league as a whole will make this year after pissing off its entire fan base. Despite the financial difficulties faced by every team, which generate as much revenue as a moderately successful lemonade stand during a good season, league owners feel confident they can supplement their profits with their shares of the Detroit Red Wings’ bottle-return money.
The settlement ratified by NHL players and owners also includes plans for another lockout in three to eight years. Indeed, following Addendum 2.6, which reads, “Maybe we should no longer let the Blackhawks sign Marian Hossa for 34 years, just a thought,” the agreement concludes by stating, “This was really fun, we should do this again in eight years.”
NHL players reported that they are happy with the deal but will have absolutely no problem heading back into a lockout in the near future. During the lockout, they apparently kept quite busy by playing hockey in Europe, seeing a dentist for the first time, and retaking the 10th grade.
“Yeah, most of us would really like to play professional hockey four out of every five years anyways, tops,” said player representative Sidney Crosby. “We didn’t really care too much either way, although the free pucks and sticks were a huge factor in our decision.”
However, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, who has presided over three league lockouts during his 20-year career and is the only league commissioner to lose a full year of major American sports, confidently stated that this collective bargaining agreement will likely hold for a long time.
“I think we all know the NHL has been a successful league for a long time and that we would never put a few dollars over the wants and needs of our fans,” said Bettman, while polishing the Least Likely to Succeed in Protracted Labor Negotiations trophy he won in eighth grade. “There’s no reason to believe that we’ll ever find ourselves in this position again.”