Monday, July 26, 2010

Kovalev's Kousin open letter to Gary Bettman

Dear Gary,
Fuck off.

Let me elaborate:
The sooner you either resign, or die, the better it will be for the NHL, and the sport of hockey.

To further elaborate:
I would like an explanation of why you have summarily rejected the contract that the New jersey Devils and Ilya Kovalchuk recently signed. In no way does the contract contravene any rules of the collective bargaining agreement for which you sacrificed an entire season.
There is no limit on contract length in the CBA.
The CBA has no stipulation limiting the degree to which contracts can be "front-loaded" in order to alleviate the salary cap. New Jersey operated entirely within the limits of the rules of the NHL. It may not have obeyed what you personally think is spirit of the rules, but it obeyed the very letter of the law. You are having a tantrum now, saying the contract circumvents the rules, but that is not New Jersey's problem. It is YOURS. You are paid seven and a quarter million dollars every year to supposedly use your brain and think of eventualities like this. You canceled an entire hockey season to get a salary cap, but didn't think beyond that. And now the rules you insisted on, the rules we fans paid an entire season for, are not good enough?

I couldn't care less about New Jersey or Ilya Kovalchuk. Personally, I think the deal is stupid and bound to create long-term problems for New Jersey. But it's their decision. What worries me is the precedent this sets. For one thing, you cannot prove this contract circumvents the problems raised by the salary cap any more than Vincent Lecavalier's, Pavel Datsyuk's, or anyone else's contract. So if there really is no difference, what's to stop you from stepping in and barring any contract you personally dislike? If you can indeed do that, then no NHL team, or fan, is safe. If Carey Price should blossom into a superstar, can you prevent Montreal from signing him to a long-term deal? The answer, based on your actions, is a definite "yes."

That is why, with all my heart, I urge you, I implore, to step down and let someone with some business sense, some foresight, some amount of brains, to take over as Commissioner of the NHL. Failing that, I promise you this: I will devoutly pray, each and every day, for your demise.


Capt. Sparrow said...

As a result of this, I can see Kovalchuk bolting to the KHL, which would hurt the NHL in many aspects (memorabilia profits taking a major hit, creditibility, etc.). As much as I dont like the contract proposed, it fits within the parameters of the CBA so there is NO reason why F*cktard Bettman should veto this deal. Just goes to show you how ass backwards the NHl front office is where humble peasants like us can figure this out but a guy who makes more money in a year that I'll ever see in a lifetime can't.

Habsfan1993 said...

Great point about the KHL.

Number31 said...

Thing is, the NHL is like an old boys club where some practices are generally frowned upon even though there's no rule against such (like plundering players away from your competition via an offer sheet even though it's available for you to exercise as you wish). If his contract were 12 years like all the others, I doubt the NHL would have made such a big deal. But after the DiPietro contract and the prospect of paying a guy who isn't capable of playing, I'm still surprised teams would still go that extra long route.

I like a contract like Plekanec's. It's long enough to take him into his mid-30s where the team can extend him with 2-year deals as they wish if he's still able to continue to play. They could have just given him a 12-year deal and covered him til he's 40, complete with a lower over-35 type of salary towards the end but instead decided to give him the option to renegotiate later.