Jump to content
The Official Site of the Montréal Canadiens

Paul Kelly Fired


Chunwah

Recommended Posts

Stuffs leaking out as I suspected:

Paul Kelly lost his job early Monday morning for reasons that are so preposterous it risks making the NHL Players’ Association the laughingstock of the sports world.

The executive director of the NHLPA was on the job and had yet to negotiate a single collective bargaining agreement for his constituents, yet was fired because he hadn’t turned every single issue with the league into a turf war.

No, the reason why Kelly was fired is that he’s not Bob Goodenow, the guy the players dumped when they found he was taking too hard a line against their employers and wouldn’t deliver them what he thought was a namby-pamby CBA during the lockout.

If the players think the payout they had to make to Saskin was a lot of money, they’ll be staggered by the amount they’ll have to give Kelly to go away.

And that’s because Kelly might have one of the all-time cases for wrongful dismissal. The uprising against Kelly was led by former ombudsman Eric Lindros, advisory board head Ron Pink and interim ombudsman Buzz Hargrove, along with some others within the current ranks of the NHLPA.

They represent the old guard of the association whose philosophy was to oppose the league on every single issue and make a confrontation out of everything possible. All of which is fine, if that’s the way the union wants to do business it certainly has the right to conduct itself in that manner.

But the question is, if that’s what it wanted, why was Goodenow shown the door in the first place and why was he replaced by Kelly, who had made it clear from the start that he was going to conduct the association’s business in a less confrontational way?

http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/2768...-for-NHLPA.html

Talk that a more hard-line approach is required by the union is nearly laughable now that the league knows that it can break this weak-willed bunch just as easily in 2012 as it did in 2005. There is no rival league and there is no other meaningful employment option for hockey players who draw hundreds of thousands of dollars in paycheques.

Maybe Kelly wasn't hardline enough for some. But he was practical and reasonable. His biggest error may have been a naive belief he could trust those with whom he was working.

The knives at the NHLPA, it seems, are never actually put away.

http://thestar.blogs.com/thespin/2009/08/s...ling-apart.html

Seems like I was right, Lindross, Pink and Bud seemed to hate compromise and wanted to fight the NHL and their demands. I outline them in my CBA thread somewhere in this forum section. The main ones were non-guaranteed deals, term limits on contracts and possibly removal on NMC/NTC.

Kelly was fired because he didn't throw these ideas in the NHL's face and instead was willing to talk, which is who he was and who Goodenow wasn't and was canned because of it.

If these reports are true, its by far the most embarassing fire in sports union history or at least up there.

Update: Heres the link to the thread.

http://forum.canadiens.com/index.php?showtopic=23421

Update #2: Speculation is Ron Pink may make a case to be the next Executive Director.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Update #3: Ron Flatley, the assistant director of player affairs has now "resigned", he was pro-Kelly and high on the PA hierachy.

So,if these reports turn out accurate,do we dare say that the player's hung him out to dry here???

I'd say they were just retarded, they're essentialling firing him for why they hired him, because hes a realist and doesn't hardball.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest NvidiaN

I've been hearing very unsavory things about Lindros and Pink, particularly regarding their abuses of the system. Anyone else hearing the same stuff? If so, why are the players being such idiots/backing them? I would think these are the last guys the players would want in control. :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From the same THN article:

So think about it. The ringleaders in Kelly’s dismissal are a former player who has run up against the establishment at every turn and resigned from the PA because he couldn’t work with Kelly (Lindros); the man who didn’t get the job when the PA decided Kelly would be a better choice (Pink); and one of the most confrontational labor leaders of our generation (Hargrove).

Again if you can connect the dots, this may mean more hardball negotiations in 2012.

This is not good.

I've been hearing very unsavory things about Lindros and Pink, particularly regarding their abuses of the system. Anyone else hearing the same stuff? If so, why are the players being such idiots/backing them? I would think these are the last guys the players would want in control. :(

Again these are hockey players making these decisions, not rocker scientists and Lindross, Pink and Hargrove have influence.

TSN also raises Ian Penny's name as a possible replacement, its probably between him, Hargrove and Pink.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's not good. There could possibly be a lockout coming within the next two years.

If theirs a lockout the draft order should be by 2009 total attendance rankings :P.

1. Chicago

2. Montreal

3. Detroit

4. Philidelphia

5. Toronto

6. Calgary

7. Ottawa

8. Vancouver

Ottawa seriously had more fans attend the games than Vancouver did last year? :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Update # four...........teen:

Again whole article will be posted, important parts listed:

But there are a number of reasons why, as a hockey fan, you should be concerned about the putsch a small, but vocal and radical group of players pulled off in Chicago in the wee hours of Monday morning.

In firing Kelly, the players made it abundantly clear they are not pleased with the current direction of their association’s affairs. There are allegations Kelly was too media friendly, a little too cozy with those who occupy the upper reaches of the NHL and the fact that he didn’t connect as well with the players as they hoped he would.

The players, it seems, also made it very clear they want a much different type of leader in place this time around. That means whoever ends up taking this job fulltime, whether it’s Eric Lindros or Ron Pink or Ian Penny, will do so armed with a steel glove on his fist rather than a velvet one.

And why should fans care about that? Because the next collective bargaining agreement comes up for renewal after the 2011-12 season, which is just three years from now. Not that Kelly would have necessarily been able to come up with a deal that would both please the players and avoid another lockout, but there’s little doubt the whole dynamic between the league and its players is about to take a radical turn.

The thing you need to know about NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, assuming he’s still holding down the post in 2012, is that he not only does well in confrontation, he likes it the way Tie Domi used to like getting into fights. Bettman thrives on confrontation and will do anything he can to come out on top when he feels his authority is being undermined. Ask Bob Goodenow if Bettman likes confrontation. Ask Jim Balsillie the same question.

Given the philosophical differences between the two sides, the lockout four years ago was inevitable. Another one is not, but the likelihood of one happening three years down the road just got a whole lot higher.

http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/2770...rs-to-fans.html

And so, a period that was supposed to be a fresh start for the oft-troubled union, a fresh start on a new relationship with the NHL, has been reduced to rubble against a backdrop of backroom politicking and personal agendas.

A glimpse at what we know at this point:

• Eric Lindros insisted he knew nothing of what was about to unfold during the union's meetings in Chicago on Sunday and Monday, but multiple sources told ESPN.com the former player was a driving force in ousting Kelly from his post.

• Sources also told ESPN.com that Halifax labor lawyer Ron Pink, who ended up on the NHLPA's advisory board after he was a candidate for Kelly's job, was also involved in the move to depose Kelly. Pink initially did not return messages from ESPN.com; then, when reached early Monday morning on his cell phone, he said he was on the other line and promised to return the call. He did not.

• Multiple sources told us the NHLPA's rank and file, and at least some team representatives, were not informed of Pink's interest in the Kelly job when he was presented to them as a candidate for the advisory board.

• Lindros was a central figure in the search committee that produced Kelly as NHLPA executive director in the wake of the embarrassing Ted Saskin affair. Saskin was driven from the post after it was revealed he had spied on members by reading their e-mails.

• After Kelly was hired, Lindros stayed on as NHLPA ombudsman for a short time, but he and Kelly did not see eye to eye and Lindros resigned. Former Canadian Autoworkers head Buzz Hargrove replaced Lindros. How Hargrove, a throwback to the dark days of confrontational, sometimes violent labor disputes in Canada, was seen as a suitable personality for this job is mind-boggling.

The outcome of the weekend's events is all in keeping with what appears to be a dangerous return to the Stone Age of labor negotiations that should put fear into all the league's players and its fans.

"Scary days," one prominent player agent told ESPN.com Monday morning.

One former player told ESPN.com on Monday he had talked to some of the 30 player representatives who expressed surprise the vote had gone the way it did. He said some player reps expressed shock that there were enough votes to lead to Kelly's dismissal. But later in the day, Hargrove told ESPN.com the vote was overwhelming in favor of dismissal.

One former NHLPA executive member said if it's true one of the reasons Kelly was overthrown was the fact he wasn't confrontational enough with NHL executives, it's a bad sign for future negotiations. "That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard," he said.

He said it's important for the league and players to have a close relationship given the nature of the current collective bargaining agreement, which sees the league and players share in hockey-related revenues. He warned that without such a relationship, there is a potential to return to the "tragic" days of the past when there were frequent labor interruptions.

Another former NHLPA executive member was livid, saying the timing of this leadership change was "terrible."

"We need to get behind Paul Kelly and let him do his job," he said.

One top player told ESPN.com that by the time the search committee gets around to finding a new executive director and gets up to speed, "he won't have time to get his pencil sharpened before we're in another lockout."

"It's the culture of paranoia," added a former player and former NHLPA executive committee member. "And what sign does this send to the league? Where's the stability at the union? It's a year or two away from needing to negotiate a new CBA."

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/columns/stor...&id=4435098

This is as I called it, Chelios said they will comment on their reasoning soon, and it better damn be a good reason.

I've said all I've had to on the issue, and I've been prtty bang on so far.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From the outside, this just looks nuts.

Goodenow was a sketchy character (look at Frost connection) but he did great things for the union. However, the NHL learned its lesson and it became apparent going forward a less hardball approach was required.

So in comes Saskin, who rolled over at every turn and seemed way too close with Bettman and Daly. Combine this with reading private e-mails, he clearly deserved to go (and never should have been hired in the first place in my opinion).

Kelly on the other hand has shown that he is willing to work with the NHL but also hasn't tried to be best friends with Bettman and Daly. I think he found a good middle-ground between Goodenow and Saskin and was quietly doing a good job at restoring the PAs respectability. He did stick up for the players (look at the Chicago contract situation) but again, he wasn't Goodenow.

Disappointing, I thought they had a good man at the helm who could stick up for the players while still being reasonable. Apparantly the association wants to return to the days of Goodenow (except Goodenow's tactics will no longer fly, the NHL learned its lesson). Now one of the most influential men is one of the most confrontational and extremist labour leaders of our generation. If he hadn't have left the CAW when he did, Chrysler and GM may have already left Canada, he never would have given into what Lewenza did.

It's premature to say there will be another lockout, but it does appear somewhat more likely.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest NvidiaN

http://www.thestar.com/sports/article/689370

^ It should read "Lindquist", not lundquist. It's my buddy's dad. I guess he (Bob) was there when it all went down or something, according to my buddy. He might be writing up a statement about it all, not sure, have to ask. But I'm pretty sure the figurative "bomb" will go off soon, and we'll all be facepalming for months.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I kinda expected this and it makes more sense now, but Proteau details the real situation:

When you examine the latest exploits of the NHL Players’ Association, the temptation is to view that troubled group as the Michael Jackson of the pro sports union fellowship.

To the untrained eye, the PA’s similarities to the late King of Pop are indeed intriguing: the union appears to operate in a reality-resistant bubble of its own making; it has been bogged down by improper/suspicious relationships (cough–David Frost-cough); it can’t stop romanticizing the Good Old Days; and now, as evidenced by the firing of former executive director Paul Kelly, it hacks away at its collective face with accelerated and frightening regularity.

But you know what? People have got this whole story wrong – and I’ve had it up to here (picture me with my hand stretched high above my satellite-sized noggin) with the outrageous amount of player bashing that’s followed Kelly’s dismissal.

I’ve got nothing against Kelly, by far the most humble, progressive and thoroughly decent man ever to hold the PA’s top post. The players may yet come to rue the day they cut him loose.

But how team owners and league brass have evaded any sort of blame for the environment that led to Kelly’s firing is beyond me.

First of all, let’s get something straight: The league won the lockout. It disproved former NHLPA boss Bob Goodenow’s presumption the players could withstand not one, but two full seasons without NHL hockey. It proved billionaire owners can always win a financial game of chicken against millionaire players, especially when (a) the millionaire players are depending on the billionaire owners’ money to continue making them millionaire players; and (B) the billionaire owners make the bulk of their fortune from industries that don’t include the millionaire players.

Because of that victory, the league lawyers drew up the collective bargaining agreement with virtually no assistance from their associates on the players’ side. Yet what nobody is writing about now is that the owners have become Goodenow-like in their aggressive, get-richer-or-die-trying approach to post-lockout league-union relations.

As one prominent U.S.-based player agent suggested in the days immediately following Kelly's firing, the league has for some time (and very quietly) been grieving all kinds of monetary issues behind the scenes, pushing players, agents and union leaders into a corner.

For example: the league has committed to its players participating in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Yet, rather than fully following through on all aspects of that commitment, league commissioner Gary Bettman and his employers chose not to purchase insurance for players to attend pre-Olympic training camps as they had done in the past, forcing the union to recommend the players not attend those camps.

This is the type of “partnership” the NHL always loved to reference during the lockout? What a load of freaking rubbish.

“The league is fighting us tooth-and-nail on everything,” said the agent, who spoke on condition his name not be used. “Once again, they were convinced they won the labor battle with the players and when the players wound up benefiting more than the owners thought they would, the league spends all their time and energy trying to roll back on issues even more than they did when they were calling all the shots during the actual labor negotiations.”

Got that, league apologists? If not, let me recap: At a time when they could have displayed class and benevolence in their labor victory, Bettman and the owners forsook the olive branch for the riding crop and have been nothing but sore winners as they retroactively attempt to plug all the CBA holes GMs and agents have created in the pursuit of a Stanley Cup.

Seeing as they were facing a Goodenowian philosophy from the owners, who can blame the NHLPA’s constituency if it wants an executive director with a Billy Idol snarl and a fuse short enough to make Sam Kinison look like the Dalai Lama?

Not this writer. I wouldn’t argue the players hold the moral and ethical hammer on each and every hockey-related issue; certainly, their reticence to adequately protect the membership (through the use of visors and other increased safety measures) continues to be a huge disappointment.

But contrasted with faceless, profit-mad, corporate monolith owners like the Toronto Maple Leafs’ syndicate – which raised their ticket prices again this year after four straight seasons of no playoff games – and perennial sob-story-uttering, limousine loiterers such as Boston’s Jeremy Jacobs, the players come off looking like Miley Cyrus, a Panda Bear and the Smurfs rolled into one.

So what if the NHLPA fired Kelly? Regardless of whether it proves to be the best decision for them, it at least shows players no longer are afraid to make a bold move against an authority figure when they think it’s necessary and when they believe that leader hasn’t performed to their expectations.

If only the league’s owners had as much gumption and an equally itchy collective trigger finger when their leaders steer them into quagmires – say, for example, into a bottomless money pit in the Arizona desert – the NHL might finally begin a new era that leaves the familiar names and stubborn attitudes of past battles where they belong.

http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/2779...-aftermath.html

Summary: The NHL is being a ***** about everything so the NHLPA doesn't want a personable guy in office, they want a ***** too. The NHL know they won the lockout and are trying to push the players around, circa old NHL.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Summary: The NHL is being a ***** about everything so the NHLPA doesn't want a personable guy in office, they want a ***** too. The NHL know they won the lockout and are trying to push the players around, circa old NHL.

*Sigh*, now why can't we all just get along?

Seriously though, thanks for posting this as it does lead me to soften my stance a bit against the players' decision here.

At the same time, though, although I get what would prompt them to want to hire a more hardline leader it still doesn't seem like a very smart decision (even if it might be more satisfying for them in the short term). Just in general terms, when someone's being a ***** when was the last time that acting like a ***** back to them actually got anything solved? It just ups the emotion in the arguement, with each side drawing a deeper line in the sand.

IMO what they actually need is someone a little more moderate. Someone who can get along with the owners, while at the same time being assertive and not completely backing down on the issues that are actually important. Now, maybe Paul Kelly wasn't that guy... we don't know what really goes on behind closed doors so it's hard to say either way. But you can be pretty sure that someone from the Buzz Hargrove school of negotiation is probably not going to be that guy either.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

*Sigh*, now why can't we all just get along?

Seriously though, thanks for posting this as it does lead me to soften my stance a bit against the players' decision here.

At the same time, though, although I get what would prompt them to want to hire a more hardline leader it still doesn't seem like a very smart decision (even if it might be more satisfying for them in the short term). Just in general terms, when someone's being a ***** when was the last time that acting like a ***** back to them actually got anything solved? It just ups the emotion in the arguement, with each side drawing a deeper line in the sand.

IMO what they actually need is someone a little more moderate. Someone who can get along with the owners, while at the same time being assertive and not completely backing down on the issues that are actually important. Now, maybe Paul Kelly wasn't that guy... we don't know what really goes on behind closed doors so it's hard to say either way. But you can be pretty sure that someone from the Buzz Hargrove school of negotiation is probably not going to be that guy either.

The thing is though Kelly was that guy. Just because he didn't declare labor walk/standoffs over every issue didn't mean he couldn't fight for his clients, which he could.

Everyone is at fault here, the NHL and the players. Kelly was the victim of two idiotic sides.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...