Monday, January 08, 2007


The Czechs want bigger Cheques

While the Russians are always in the public eye for their refusal to sign a transfer agreement with the NHL, the Czechs aren't exactly happy campers.

While they reluctantly agreed to the current deal, you get the feeling that many of the Czech Extraliga executives would love for the Russians to win this battle and open up a free-market transfer economy for hockey players.

From the Czech Business Weekly:
Under the standing agreement signed by the NHL and the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) in 2005, the NHL paid $200,000 (Kč 4.1 million/€ 150,900) per player upon his departure to the NHL. Altogether, the NHL paid to European clubs $9.7 million last season.

In late 2006, the NHL came up with a draft of a new deal that would pay $15 million to Europe per season over the next three years in compensation for departed players. The draft was presented to hockey representatives from the Czech Republic, Finland, Sweden, Russia, Slovakia, Germany and Switzerland at a December meeting in Zurich.

The new deal would relax the current regulation that only 45 players from one country can be drafted per season by the NHL. As a result, transfer fees could sink below $200,000 per player, said Martin Urban, general secretary of the Czech Ice Hockey Association (ČSLH). “Everything would now depend on the number of players leaving for the NHL,” Urban said.

Although the new contract was disadvantageous, Czech clubs agreed not to object to it, said HC Pardubice general manager Zbyněk Kusý, who also works as the Czech national team’s general manager.

“We’ve been ripped off by the NHL, but it’s better to get something than nothing, which would happen if we didn’t agree to the draft,” Kusý said.

The NHL stipulated that the new agreement will become valid only if all seven European countries give their consent to the deal. The draft is now being considered by the national hockey associations.

Ahh, Zbynek Kusy, GM of the rich Pardubice team who is always whining about something. Considering most of the other clubs can't get the lucrative sponsors to sign with their club, Kusy ought to learn to shut up more. (You can tell I don't think much of Pardubice, home of Hasek himself)

The argument that the Czech teams might get screwed because more than 45 Czechs get taken in any one year might make logical sense. In reality, however, the argument is pretty much bunk once you realize that there will never be 45 Czechs taken in any one draft.

2006 Entry Draft - 8 Czechs taken
2005 Entry Draft - 12 Czechs taken

That doesn't take into account that many players don't even make the NHL.

Hmm, $9.7mil to European clubs at $200,000 per player equals 48.50 players. Who is the half player? Ummm...

Anyway, $15mil per season at $200,000 a pop would be 75 players. Do you really think there will be 75 new players from Europe playing in the NHL next season? Of course not. The European clubs would stand to make more than the current price-per-player.

This deal sounds pretty good for the European clubs, since you know the NHL will never go for the open-market philosophy of soccer. Really, what is to truly stop a player from going to the NHL if they really want to? Unless they get screwed into a lifetime-like contract that the Russian teams bully their players into, the player could just up and leave at any time once his club contract expires in Europe. The teams don't 'own' the players as much as they'd like to think they do.

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The half-player is surely Petr Nedved.
As for transfer fees, the NHL should tell Europe to go f*** itself. Slavery is over. Hockey players should be able to sell themselves to the highest bidder. Sign a contract with any team in the world. And move on at the end of that contract. The only time a fee should be paid is when a team holding a valid contract transfers a player to another team mid-contract. The "contracts" extorted out of players by the gangsters in Russia are another thing entirely. Wait till Morozov gets back to North America next year and tells the media the entire story. Malkin showed the world how to escape the new Iron Curtain and the American courts flipped the bird to the commies.
Art, speaking of slavery, what is a system of the NHL entry draft other than slavery? I want to play for Rangers, but I was too good and unfortunately has been drafted by St.Louis. Rangers would pay me as much as I want, but I had to suck with Blues.

You obviously dont have any informations about how it comes in european hockey and with this approach, european (and czech, slovak and rusian specially) supply to the NHL player pool would dramaticaly decrease in following years. Why? Because clubs will have no motivation and no money to raise and develop talents to let them go for free.
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