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By: Patrick Romanoski
A delinquent NHL (tisk,tisk) has yet to solve the Gretzky equation, leaving their supposed best asset in limbo and further complicating the preparations needed by the Coyotes to be ready for the upcoming season. Negotiations may be “underway” but the tiniest amount of foresight would have prevented this latest smudge on the reputation of the league.
This simple to solve situation is an indication of the lack of true leadership and reflects the NHL is least concerned with the Phoenix Coyotes in this entire escapade. The task, get him back behind the bench and now.
No long term negotiation need be contemplated, only a resolution for this season is imperative. Wayne has previously indicated, according to the Ice Edge offer, that he was willing to accept a salary reduction to $2 million if it meant the team stayed in Glendale.
So we have 2 bidders and a simple problem. Looking at this objectively, one might think that if each bidder put up half of that amount to secure Mr.Gretzky’s concerns this issue might disappear, but how to implement such a solution?
The league in their paralysis might benefit from a helping hand extending an olive branch. Doug MacLean, being recently hired by PSE may have the connections to help get this situation resolved quickly. Doug, an accomplished coach himself, may be in line to replace the great one as coach should the team move to Hamilton any time this season.
A commitment by PSE to help in this situation could go a long way towards fostering a climate of conciliation and might be seen by the NHL as proof that the opposing factions can in fact work together splendidly.
The details of the agreement could be worked out completely in future negotiations, but having a framework agreed upon with the money available is all that would be necessary to protect the best interests of the club, the players & Mr. Gretzky.
One would hope this would be sufficient to satisfy Mr. Gretzky temporarily should his concerns be only compensation for his coaching duties.
Stay tuned tomorrow for the next article, Double Bubble (Or Why Glendale Has No Choice But To Reject a $50 Million Offer).