The NHL is going to have a handful in 2012 when the current Collective Bargaining Agreement expires and they, along with the NHLPA, must come to terms with tweaking the Salary Cap, rules and restrictions, as well as any other hair-brain ideas the league has come up with to “improve” the league.
Oh, but did I mention that this season may have a few wrinkles of it’s own? According to The Hockey News, they have received information that the NHL Officials Association, that is our Referees and Linesmen, are without a contract.
Well who needs ‘em. They all make bad calls anyway. I can’t think of a game where I’ve left saying, “Wow, that officiating was spot on!”
Oh, but did I mention they’re contacting minor league officials, officials from the AHL and ECHL, to fill in, in the event the two sides can’t come to terms. That will make this season just a little more interesting.
To be fair, on ice officials are human – they too can make mistakes and could be looking the other way, literally, when something happens at the opposite end of the ice. You you always see the negative more than the positive. If you don’t make a comment about the officiating of the game, they probably did their job very well.
But what’s their problem with the NHL? They’re nervous about job performance. Apparently, when they go back to the dressing room (officials have dressing rooms??), their supervisor tells them one thing, but can then proceed to write down anything and send it off to league headquarters without showing them what it is they’re sending out.
THN also speculates that money and pensions are also issues currently being discussed, but union officials refuse to disclose what is occurring during the negotiations.
We currently sit 10 days away from the Devils first pre-season game, September 21, against the Philadelphia Flyers. It is uncertain how close or far the NHL and the NHLOA are to reaching an agreement.