Blog Entry

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

Posted on: October 21, 2011 3:58 pm
 
Posted by Royce Young

The players are standing firm in their conviction to get what they see as a fair deal. Good for them, I guess. But at the same time, all those little BRI percentage points they've dug their heels in to get will start to disappear with each NBA game that is missed.

The difference between 52.5 percent and 50 percent is really only about $50 million in real money per season. The players will lose that in less than two weeks.

You know who knows all about this? NHL players. They lost their entire season in 2004-05 because the owners were trying for major systematic changes. And one former player, Bill Guerin, is trying to tell the NBA players that it's just not worth it. Via the Star-Telegram:

"It's not worth it. Get a deal done," former Dallas Stars forward Bill Guerin said during a phone call last week.

There was not a single NHL player during the Great Lockout of 2004-05 who was a bigger proponent of the union's fight than this man. No one believed in the cause more than Guerin, and to hear him admit this is a bit stunning.

"I learned a big lesson: It's not a partnership. It's their league, and you are going to play when they want," he said.

Today, Guerin has hindsight and his experience serves as a giant caution to any player who thinks losing a game, much less an entire season, to this lockout is a good idea. His message is simple: Get what you can; start playing; you are not going to win what you think.

"It is not worth it to any of them to burn games or to burn an entire year. Burning a year was ridiculous," Guerin said. "It wasn't worth me giving up $9 million a year, or 82 games plus the playoffs, then having a crappy year and being bought out.... Guys in the NBA making $15 million or however much better think long and hard about this."

Now the NHL and NBA situations aren't all that comparable. The NHL was a blue collar sport with a white collar system, as some have described it. It needed to be restructured and really, the league is better for it today.

But it's good advice from Guerin to NBA players. It really isn't worth it. Like really, it's not worth it in terms of dollars and cents. Or at least it won't be in a few weeks.

Consider this quote from Guerin: "We could have waited two years and they would have waited us out -- I would have given an extra 2 percent back to play that year," Guerin said. "When you are in the Heat of battle, and you are fired up, you don't think what they are doing is right. But it's not about what is right or wrong -- it's their league. It's theirs. I feel, personally, I didn't like guys giving up a year of their career, for what? A few less Bucks? Guys are making more money now than they ever have."
That sounds like sense to me. It sounds like it's not just the type of stuff columnists and writers like me are blowing up players' butts with. That's real stuff from a guy that knows. That's something from a player that lived through an ENTIRE lost season. That's something to pay attention to.

When Billy Hunter said a hard cap system is a "blood issue" you knew that there was some emotional investment in this for the players. They want their old system back. A new NBA world where owners make lots of money and they make less isn't something they want.

But face facts: Whether it's 52.5 percent BRI or 47 percent BRI, NBA players are still going to make a crapton of money playing ball. That's the reality. Like Guerin said, it's hard to fully grasp that when you're in a battle trying to fight over something you're convinced isn't right, but sometimes life's not fair. Sometimes, the guys in charge wearing the suits get to make those decisions that aren't fair. And the employees, for better or worse, just have to live with it.
Category: NBA
Comments

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: October 24, 2011 10:45 am
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

BRI is basketball related income.  That's what they are fighting for.  The players were getting 57 percent of the overall BRI and the owners were getting 43 percent, at least up until this season.  Since the owners lost 300 million dollars they need at least a 50-50 split to guarantee they don't lose money assuming the BRI increases as it should and that it doesn't decrease.

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Thank you Redwings1969



footbook1
Since: Oct 22, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 2:02 pm
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Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 22, 2011 1:08 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

It is my guess that  if the union would agree to a hard salary cap the owners would agree to the players getting BRI at 53%.  Guerin is correct in that the players are going to lose this battle and the longer they dig their heels in the more they are going to lose.  Eventually, just the NHL players in 2005, the players will cave and give the owners what they want.  The entire season will probably be lost, but the owners are in a better position to handle a lost season than the players and the owners are going to win this fight.  I am not saying the owners are being fair, but they have more leverage and they are going to win.  It is that simple. 

Nice post, except for one thing. The owners absolutely need to gross at least 2 billion plus per season to profit so unless the BRI increases they can't offer the players more then 50 percent, not with or without a hard cap or at least not in the beginning with a projected BRI of 4 billion dollars.  Mabe some sort of sliding scale that allows the owners to gross over 2 billion dollars... for example as the BRI increases the owners might be willing to offer the players more.  Let's say the BRI was to increase 25 percent to 5 billion dollars, maybe the owners will let the players have more of the profits then their initial 50-50 offer, but for the first 4 or 4.5 billion dollars the owners really can't bend.  A 50-50 split right now is really a hard cap since at a 4 billion dollar BRI the players would be taking somewhere between a 10 and 12 percent decrease in pay. 

As for leverage, owners in any business almost always have more leverage then employees. For some reason in the sports world players believe they should be "partners" but not in the conventional way.  Normally partners take risks in business, they put up capital and can lose money.... the players want guaranteed profits, more and more year after year while the owners take all the risks.

I've never heard of a business that operates that way in the real world..... so why should the players get what they want? 



Since: Oct 12, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 12:08 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

It is my guess that  if the union would agree to a hard salary cap the owners would agree to the players getting BRI at 53%.  Guerin is correct in that the players are going to lose this battle and the longer they dig their heels in the more they are going to lose.  Eventually, just the NHL players in 2005, the players will cave and give the owners what they want.  The entire season will probably be lost, but the owners are in a better position to handle a lost season than the players and the owners are going to win this fight.  I am not saying the owners are being fair, but they have more leverage and they are going to win.  It is that simple. 



Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:16 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

 To fix that hemorrhage the owners need to get below break even @ 49%. A 50-50 split is not a good result for the owners. But the players sneered at that ($4.2M average per year per player.) So they lose games and refuse to negotiate. 

If analysts and experts projected BRI of 4 billion dollars for the 2011-2012 season is in fact accurate, a 50-50 split would equate to an approximate 66 million dollar profit for the owners.  The owners grossed 1.63 billion last year and lost 300 million.... that's where I'm getting my numbers from.  And if the BRI increases by 5 percent the next year, the owners would profit another 100 million the second year for about 160 million dollars.  After 2 years that still only amounts to the average NBA salary, far below what an owner should make but at least it's progress.  

I'm on the owner's side, don't misunderstand what I said.... I just think a 50-50 split or about a 13 percent paycut for the players is a fair deal.  The problem is the players aren't willing to budge beyond something like 47.5 for the owners which doesn't come close to getting it done.

The players burn here... big time.  Anybody that understands math at all knows that losing 100 percent of your salary to avoid taking what very well could be a temporary 13 percent paycut is stupid....   The players grossed around 2.2 billion dollars last season, and had a chance to gross around 2 billion dollars if the BRI would have hit 4 billion this year...  that could have and would have been a 200 million dollar loss...  instead they are choosing to lose out on 2 billion dollars?  

I don't get it.... 



Since: Dec 5, 2006
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:01 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

A voice of reason in an emotional ill-conceived CBA negotiations by the players. Royce, I appreciate your point. Most of the other writers today are looking for disgruntled NBA players who blame everyone else but themselves. "It is all David Stern's fault." "It is all Paul Allen's fault." "It is the greedy owners." Now Mr. Guerin tells it like it is. The NBA players should want the owners to make money. How many of us fans are out of work or have family members out of work because their employer could not make money? The NBA is a business and must be profitable to be healthy and stable for the employees including the players. The NBA lost $1.8B over the past CBA's six years. To fix that hemorrhage the owners need to get below break even @ 49%. A 50-50 split is not a good result for the owners. But the players sneered at that ($4.2M average per year per player.) So they lose games and refuse to negotiate.

The current soft cap system has prevented any team but Chicago, Detroit, Miami, Houston, San Antonio, Boston, Dallas or Los Angeles from winning over the last 28 years. The other 22 teams might just as well fold. But any attempt to make each team competitive is a 'blood issue'. Just so they know it is their blood. The cap has to harden. The exceptions have to diminish. The contracts have to be more in tune with production. Every month now that goes by provides less for the players. The 50-50 split offered is not going to be reoffered. Perhaps a point a month? Only time will tell. Thanks for the honest word, Royce. I am glad someone is paying attention.



Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 21, 2011 10:07 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

Listen to a NBA player talk during an interview, and then listen to a NHL player talk during an interview.  Draw your own conclusion.   

Bingo.  LOL.   That's so true.... the least educated NHL player is brilliant compared to the average NBA player....

Damn. The NBA had to write up a new rule for NBA players telling them what to wear coming off buses and planes and what they were allowed to do, how to present themselves, etc.   They have no clue ......  



Since: Nov 5, 2007
Posted on: October 21, 2011 8:26 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'

I don't know about anyone else, but I'm perfectly fine without the NBA. Televise more hockey. Give me some college hockey in addition to the NHL.

I hate the NBA because of the players and the culture. The days of MJ, Bird, Magic... they're over. They can be found again when that league realizes that there doesn't have to be an NBA. When the game starts over from scratch, the NBA can grow again. Putting it back together again how it stands does nothing for me.


lowereized098
Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 21, 2011 8:23 pm
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Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: October 21, 2011 8:06 pm
 

NHL player Bill Guerin : 'It's not worth it'


The average IQ of the NBA player is 100. It explains why they only average 1 year in college- barely long enouigh to be declared ineligible.
 
They make an average salary of $5 million a year. That means the NBA pays the highest salary for the least intelligent employees, in any occupation in the world.

There is a lot of smokescreen about revenue sharing and BRI, that only hides the real problem: The players don't care if the NBA loses millions of dollars, they are intent on getting guaranteed money, with no reduction in max contract or a hard cap, or they won't agree to play...period. The "concessions" the NBPA agreed to amount to no more than $200 million, leaving $100 million in guaranteed loss, and the owners won't agree to lose any more money.

A really simple proposal put it all in perspective: If the top 30 paid players agree to reduce thier contracts by 20% (bringing a $20 mil salary to $16 mil)  and the $100 million loss vanishes...the 95% balance of the players take no cut, they don't have to discuss cap or BRI...problem over....the union REJECTED the proposal.

That makes it obvious- the NBPA union truly only represents those max contract players- it's where they feel they have tall heir clout...so it's Kobe, LeBron, Wade, Paul, Peirce, Garnett, Lewis, Howard, Nowitzki, etc...who make more in endorsements than they do in salary anyway, insisting on giving nothing back that has this whole process stopped. The NBA isn't just being kind by not advertising this, the NBA's biggest sponsors have Billions invested in these same slumdog millionaires pimping their products, and the truth stands to not only distroy fan appeal of the players, but in their products. It's a shake down the NBA and the players union feel they have to hide, and hope better sense prevails...while Dwayne Wade tweets how greedy owners are.    


 It's why it didn't take the Federal Mediator long to figure out HE was wasting HIS time.

Owners need to close up shop until the union falls apart, and 95% of players tell the max contract players to take a cut, retire, or take a hike.  

Consumers need to boycott any product with these bandits face or name associated with them. They're trying to bilk us all.     
     


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