FanShot

Dobber Hockey: Legal Interpretation of Kovalchuk Deal

2

"Some of you long-time readers may remember Thieving Giraffe from the forum. Well, he's been tied up in law school for several years now, but still checks in from time to time. He had this to say about the Kovalchuk issue, from a legal standpoint: "As dual legal/hockey junky, I got all hopped up evaluating the legality and basis for this veto. Thought I'd share my thoughts, if you're interested. The veto is reportedly based upon Section 26.3 of the CBA, which reads as follows: CBA § 26.3: (a) No Club or Club Actor, directly or indirectly, may: (i) enter into any agreements, promises, undertakings, representations, commitments, inducements, assurances of intent, or understandings of any kind, whether express, implied, oral or written, including without limitation, any SPC, Qualifying Offer, Offer Sheet or other transaction, or (ii) take or fail to take any action whatsoever, if either (i) or (ii) is intended to or has the effect of defeating or Circumventing the provisions of this Agreement or the intention of the parties as reflected by the provisions of this Agreement, including without limitation, provisions with respect to the financial and other reporting obligations of the Clubs and the League, Team Payroll Range, Player Compensation Cost Redistribution System, the Entry Level System and/or Free Agency. Obviously that's a lot of excess provisions for the current situation. Reduced to what's relevant, Section 26.3 reads: CBA § 26.3: No Club or Club Actor, directly or indirectly, may: (i) enter into any agreements… if… (i)… is intended to or has the effect of defeating or Circumventing the provisions of this Agreement… including without limitation, provisions with respect to… Team Payroll Range… and/or Free Agency. If GB is smart, he will omit any mention of intent, because frankly he does not have to show a lack of good faith in order to veto the agreement (and obviously there's no need to go out of his way to insult Lou). Therefore, an arbitrator would not have to find that the deal was intended to circumvent the salary cap or that good faith had been breached, but rather simply that those final years at roughly a half-million per would have such an effect. Doesn't seem like a very hard sell to me." - Mike Yedinak (Thieving Giraffe)"

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