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  • What does the 1976 minor hockey study prove today?

    Image Source: The Hockey News After reading this study, I decided to try to link this to the issues today with the player and team contract agreement. What I found is that the WHL falsely declares that it is a nonprofit organization, while making hundreds of millions of dollars from jersey sales, video game rights, hockey card rights, TV deals, ticket sales, and concession sales. They falsely declare that WHL players are amateurs, despite paying them a pathetic amount of money, and during the contract, they continue to refer to these players as "amateurs". They also falsely declare that verbal agreements are null and void, but it is a known fact that they can hold up in court with sufficient evidence. They also illegally withhold the copy of their contract from the player. They consistently refer to Regulations & Rules are stated as being in place from time to time, meaning that they can enforce whatever rules that they want at any given moment, which brings us back to the discretionary power that the 1976 study criticized. As the contract pertains to post-secondary education, they do not support players in this financially if it goes unclaimed after a year. Players forced to pay 10% interest compounded monthly for failure in post-secondary education, but the team will not cancel classes if you have to miss time due to injury. Players are ineligible for scholarship benefits if they have NHL contract, play for AHL team, play pro in Europe, do not enroll by September 15 after one year following his 20 year old season, or 2 years following his 19 year old season, or does not attend in consecutive years full-time the year after the benefits were first used, which narrows the capacity to receive one down to a small minority of players. The contract also defines scholarship expenses as reasonable if it is a publicly funded institution, which discourages academic excellence if they won't get a full ride. The contract says not to accept additional benefits from the club or any third party, despite them paying players and making them renounce their NCAA eligibility. It is also written in that the player transfers all rights, commercial or otherwise, to the Club and WHL, therefore going against another recommendation made by that study, stating that players should be allowed to market themselves. They go on to contradict themselves by saying in Paragraph 4.7 that they need to obtain the written consent of the players for his likeness, even though they already use the players names for video games, jersey sales, hockey card deals, and other merchandise. They then go on to say that the player is not allowed to use his own likeness in association with copyrighted logos for whatever reason without the written consent of the Club, WHL, or CHL, further eliminating economic opportunity for the player. It appears that they only wish for the players to seek endorsements if they get a piece of the action. They are not required to pay for disability insurance, so if a player gets injured in such a manner that they can't work certain jobs when they're finished with Junior hockey, the league does not back them up. The fact that all disputes between Club and player are sent to the WHL Commissioner shows a heavily tipped scale in favor of the owners, going against another recommendation from that study that players be given a fair right to recourse. Article 10 clearly states that the contract is null and void if they fail to honor their agreements to the Player. 10.1 (a) (ii) clearly states that rules and regulations are firmly established, contradicting themselves in many earlier paragraphs where they state that they are in place from time to time. Only if they are not on the protected list of 50 Players, they will get released by their Club, and they need to obtain a written release from the WHL, and pay 500 000$ in either currency, depending on where the team is located. Only if the Player is unfit as a result of an injury related to the WHL can they survive termination of the agreement. If the Player is injured in an off-ice accident, then the league has the option to terminate the contract, regardless of what happened. It also goes on to define certain medical expenses as reasonable, and says only certain medical assessments are reasonable, meaning that they only want their doctors in the picture, and therefore restrict the player's medical freedom. Players do not have unrestricted free agency after the season. They say that they pay for the player’s travel expenses, but there are personal testimonies saying otherwise, and they do not pay their players enough to even remotely cover gas expenses. Tutors and educational advisors are deemed only as reasonably necessary expenses, contradicting earlier statements that say that the Club must have them with the team. It is unknown how much the Players willingly consented to as individuals. For contracts to be fully in effect, there needs to be a 3rd party witness. This contract has been illegal, invalid, and unenforceable before, making the contracts extremely illegal. Only the province or state in which the litigation takes place may have jurisdiction over this, limiting the player's capacity for recourse. The warning issued in 1976 was clearly dismissed and shouted down, and so nearly 50 years later, we find ourselves fighting the same battle. The WHL uses ambiguous language, complicated terms, takes advantage of minors and their parents, and the few token bonuses that are there for players go largely unclaimed, due to a seemingly bureaucratic process and a short window to claim them. The contradictory nature in the contract also leaves many wondering, "What was the promise? Was there ever one? What did they really intend on giving us?" Every contract that the players signed is null and void, and they do not have to comply with the contract. If every player knew this though, what would the WHL do?

  • What was said about Canadian Junior Hockey 50 years ago is still true.

    There was a particular study done back in 1976 on junior hockey, mostly conducted by Roger Jackson and Paul Kringle, and this study mostly pertained to high level amateur hockey and Major Junior. This was largely a reactionary study on the ethical and legal violations that the Canadian Major Junior Hockey Leagues were found guilty of committing. This study takes the position that the player should be allowed to play where he wishes, that he be allowed to play for the team of his choice, and that he should be granted fair working conditions, as are the rights that many workers in different industries enjoy. They heavily focused on the delicate balance between organizational needs and the player's wishes, and how the rules imposed by the governing bodies were only deemed "reasonable" by the organization. What this study uncovered was that in the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association, they declared themselves as being above any review mechanisms, that they impose invalid restraints on individual liberty, and that they deny hockey players their right to natural justice. They compared it to a slave trade, stating how the advanced Junior leagues would enter into formal contracts with minors, that these minors have no bargaining rights, and that the league has conspired for there to be no unrestricted free agency. There was the case of Willie Crankem, who first had trouble with the system when he requested to transfer to a new team. The request was denied on the grounds that limit the amount of players that transfer in a season to keep a fair level of play, which are seemingly reasonable grounds. However, later in his life, as he rose through the ranks of amateur hockey, he found out through a radio broadcast that he was sold to another team. They didn't ask him, they didn't even tell him, and as a result of this sale, he had to chooses between pursuing further education and chasing a professional career. Back then, there weren't the options that there are now, as the Cold War was in full swing, and players didn't play overseas like they do now. As for the organizational structure, the NHL and the CAHA conspired to keep the World Hockey Association, a brand-new competitive league at the same level as the NHL, out of the rookie pool. The WHA did not invest into the CAHA, meaning that they could get their rookies at a lower cost, but that it would be too difficult to draw from the same pool as the NHL. The emergence of the WHA was thought by many to break the NHL's stranglehold on Junior hockey, which is why NHLPA Executive Director, Alan Eagleson, lobbied the current NHL players to support the merger in 1979. It went against the interest of the players to eliminate the competing league, but Eagleson was self-interested and in the back pockets of the owners. This study later goes on to state that the CAHA is monopolistic in its practices, having declared itself the only governing body in hockey in Canada. This claim is proven just by looking at their competition. There is none, and the practices that they employ keep players from going to play in college, and there was no knowledge of European leagues. These leagues existed, but they weren't on anyone's radar in North America. The study goes on to explain that the league disciplinary methods are discretionary, meaning that the penalty for violating certain rules are not known to the player until the infraction is committed. This means that the league can easily employ a 2-tiered justice system where players aren't even aware of how it works, because of how much the waters have been muddied. This study found the league to be indictable on the grounds that they use excessive discretionary power over players, the one-sided contracts, and the conspiracies to strip any freedoms that remain from the player. In response to these issues, they made recommendations of what to drain from the swamp. They proposed to eliminate the supremacy of the system, the lack of external reviews, the practice of entering formal contracts with minors, the practices of eliminating free market bargaining for players, the payment from the NHL for "player development costs", and the conspiracies between teams to prevent the player from marketing his skills. These statements about the leagues rang true then, and they ring true today, with the exception of a few face saving token concessions that have come at no cost to the organizations. When your organization tells you where to work, tells you you have no other option, and then prevents you from seeking justice, that sounds like obstruction of justice to me. If they couldn't obstruct justice, they would be walking from a cell to a courtroom for months before they would even begin their prison sentences.

  • CHL players underpaid, overworked, and undercompensated.

    It's a magical dream to become a professional hockey player for many Canadians. However, in the CHL, there seems to be an ongoing issue around the financial issues that concern the league, and there are many players that come and go, and there is a great many that had success in those leagues. Some were rewarded, some were not, but the ones who have long been forgotten about have never been given more than a kick in the ass on the way out the door. For many, the hurt is especially felt in the bank account, where they make as little as 35 CAD per week, and let's not lose sight of the fact that their players are aged 16-20, signing contracts that they don't understand, signing away their rights for what amounts to millions in jersey, t-shirt, and video game sales. For a good team in the CHL, they might make upwards of 50 million USD, and even for the worst, they may still come away with a good 10 million USD. Small town market teams may not make the same kind of money as the bigger market teams, such as the Vancouver Giants, Seattle Thunderbirds, London Knights, or the Quebec Remparts. However, there is still money to be made by linking hockey programs for younger kids to the big league junior teams, such as the Baie-Comeau Drakkar, or the Swift Current Broncos. They may not make much off of ticket sales, but they still have every square inch of the boards covered with sponsors and advertisements, and that alone is worth millions of dollars. The strength of the CHL's leverage is greater than most could imagine, and as a result, the NHL is completely dependent on it. In 2013, the CHL Commissioners, David Branch, and the Deputy Commissioner of the NHL, Bill Daly, drafted an agreement in which the NHL puts money into the pockets of the CHL for specific expenses. It was a 7 year-long agreement in which the NHL reimburses no less than 750 000 $ (all amounts paid to the CHL are believed to be in USD) to each of the 3 leagues under the CHL umbrella. The NHL also pays the leagues at least 255 000 $ each on average for the cost of educating players on substance abuse, gambling, and sexual activity. They also pay at least 315 000 $ for concussion related services, 775 000 $ for officiating, 500 000 $ for elite player skill development, and an annual grant to the CHL of 7 605 000 $ or however much the two parties deemed necessary just for the sake of giving them a grant. These amounts were paid to the CHL in 2 installments on November 14 and February 1st. After all the associated costs were listed, the total grant amounted to 79 800 000 $ over 7 years, an average of 11 400 000 $ per season. Another issue is the money they pay to the CHL to retain players to burn out the entry-level contracts, usually signed at 925 000 $ for 3 years. But because these contracts are 2-way, the big money only gets paid to players who make their NHL roster. They agreed to give the CHL up to 60 000 $ for a skater and up to 75 000 $ for a goalie who is retained after the start of the season. That amount increases to a maximum of 85 000 $ per skater and 100 000$ for the 2nd season being retained by the CHL. After all is said and done, the CHL not only makes money by withholding it from their players, but they stand to make money by saving the NHL big amounts. They save 307 000 000$ a year from the NHL, because they only have to pay the signing bonus to a player who signs an entry-level deal. The NHL pays you, why can't you pay your players?

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  • The Hosts | Broken Twigs Sports + Entertainment

    The Hosts Here is all the information on the people who's articles and podcasts you'll consume. Gabriel Alix Founder of the podcast, Gabriel Alix is a formidable storyteller, main journalist, and a brilliant speaker. Growing up watching Don Cherry on Coach's Corner, he had dreamed of playing hockey professionally, but because he didn't put in the effort needed to become a pro athlete, he chose the next best thing, creating his own media company to get closer to the game.

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    The Latest News Gabriel Alix 21 hours ago 4 min HOCKEY What does the 1976 minor hockey study prove today? Image Source: The Hockey News After reading this study, I decided to try to link this to the issues today with the player and team... 1 0 1 like. Post not marked as liked 1 Gabriel Alix 21 hours ago 3 min HOCKEY What was said about Canadian Junior Hockey 50 years ago is still true. There was a particular study done back in 1976 on junior hockey, mostly conducted by Roger Jackson and Paul Kringle, and this study... 5 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix 22 hours ago 3 min HOCKEY CHL players underpaid, overworked, and undercompensated. It's a magical dream to become a professional hockey player for many Canadians. However, in the CHL, there seems to be an ongoing issue... 5 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix May 26 2 min HOCKEY CHL class action lawsuit to be brought back to light. In a very bold move to bring justice to players, I have decided to bring a couple of the recent lawsuits levied against the CHL to light.... 12 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix May 7 5 min HOCKEY I went 8 for 8 on my predictions for the First Round. Image Credits: nhl.com/playoffs/2024/bracket I understand it's a bit late for Second Round predictions, but I'll give them anyway. It's... 1 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 22 2 min HOCKEY Western Conference Predictions for the First Round (Article drafted April 19th) ratings-display.rating-aria-label (1) Image Credits: NHL, YouTube P1 Vancouver Canucks vs. WC1 Nashville Predators I had Vancouver winning this one in 5 games. 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The... 1 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 14 2 min HOCKEY Canucks sweep Oilers as Pacific Division title turns from fantasy to reality Image Credits: Sportsnet The Canucks, with a 3-1 win over the Oilers, accomplished one of many things with this win tonight. They swept... 0 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 13 2 min HOCKEY Vegas has made it, and they likely had to cheat to do it Image Credits: Abbie Parr, Associated Press I have not been shy about voicing my criticisms towards the Vegas Golden Knights and Gary... 2 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 11 2 min HOCKEY The matchup of the year: Detroit vs. Pittsburgh Image Credits: Joe Sargent NHL There are no secrets that this game is a big one for both teams, as they battle for one last playoff spot.... 0 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 9 4 min HOCKEY NHL On Tap for tonight Image Credits: nhltraderumor.com There are 13 games going on tonight, with only 6 teams left out tonight. However, everyone has something... 3 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 8 3 min MOVIES, TV, ENTERTAINMENT Movie review Monday: The Running Man I came across The Running Man a few days ago, and decided to give it a try, because even though it was one of Schwarzie's lesser known... 5 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 7 2 min HOCKEY Are the Canucks ready for Vegas tomorrow? Image Credits: Bob Frid, USA TODAY Sports As we approach the end of the regular season, we are seeing a separation between the good and... 12 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 6 1 min HOCKEY Collaborating with the PP3 Podcast and what it means to Broken Twigs Image Credits: Unknown, obtained from rss.com Yesterday, the PP3 Podcast sat down and had a conversation with me and my co-host, Reggie... 15 0 Post not marked as liked Gabriel Alix Apr 6 2 min HOCKEY Heating up at playoff time: Is it worth it? 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