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NHL lockout: Mark Recchi thinks players should sign deal now

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Retired NHL player Mark Recchi, who's currently a minor league hockey owner, is advising players to quickly agree to a new CBA.

Jim Rogash

Mark Recchi, a long-time NHL veteran and now retired player that owns a minor league hockey franchise, became the latest outsider to express an opinion on the NHL lockout, and current players may not like what he has to say.

According to an article by the Boston Herald's Kevin Paul, Recchi is advising players to sign a CBA agreement and return to work.

"My advice,’’ mused Recchi, part owner of the Kamloops Blazers junior squad in the Western Hockey League, "is that the longer it goes, the worse [the offer] is going to get [for the players]. Hey, I’m an owner, too, so I see both sides. We lose money on our team, and obviously that’s not the same, the money’s not nearly as significant as in the NHL, but the business dynamics are similar. We’ve lost money every year we’ve owned it.’’

During the course of his 25-year career, Recchi had two seasons (1994-95 and '04-05) impacted by lockout situations, and as he looks at the current dispute he's glad not to be a part of it.

The lockout is close to reaching the 60-day mark and shows no signs of ending anytime soon, as players and owners are still trying to figure out how to agree on a revenue split.

Recchi says players shouldn't agree to whatever commissioner Gary Bettman offers, but acknowledges the offer from the owners to the players is only going to get worse not better.

"The longer they’re out, the revenues are going to go down and down,’’ said Recchi, explaining why he believes the NHL’s offer is only going to get worse. "Corporate sponsors aren’t going to be lining up . . . so there goes that money. The schedule isn’t going to be 82 games, I don’t think, at this point. That’s more money lost. So, how are you going to get a better deal? Personally, I think the best time is now.’’

Read the full article on Recchi's opinions here.