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Several NHL owners have NOT pledged to pay arena staff.

Some people are left out to dry.

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The coronavirus outbreak has proven to be a major inconvenience for many of us and has been much, much, worse for some of those who have had the misfortune of contracting the deadly virus, however there have definitely been some positive takeaways from this global incident. There is no question that the outbreak has rallied the citizens of this world behind a unified cause, the effort to stop the spread of this disease as quickly and as safely as possible and we have already seen some incredible generosity on the part of our fellow humans. 

Many such examples of generosity has come from the sports world where league's have been forced to shut down all across North America, a major inconvenience for the owners in those respective leagues and an extremely costly one at that. In spite of the fact that owners in these professional sports league's stand to lose millions upon millions of dollars due to the stoppage of play, many of those same owners have pledged to help out those around their respective organizations that may be most impacted by the sudden stoppages. Although the players will all still get paid there has been some concern regarding members of the arena staff that are now suddenly left scrambling for work, but thankfully many of the owners have come to their aid and have pledged to cover their salaries through the month of March and in some cases until this crisis comes to an end. 

There are however several owners of National Hockey League franchises that have made no such commitment in spite of the fact that in many cases they could clearly afford to do so, although that does not mean they will not do so down the line. The guys over at RMNB have compiled a list of all the NHL owners who thus far have NOT committed to paying their arena staff in spite of the stoppages, and have even put the names of the owners that fall under the "billionaire" status in bold lettering. 

Here is what RMNB has dubbed "the naughty list:"

  • Arizona Coyotes – Alex Meruelo
  • Boston Bruins – Jeremy Jacobs
  • Buffalo Sabres – Terrence Pegula
  • Carolina Hurricanes – Tom Dundon
  • Chicago Blackhawks – Rocky Wirtz
  • Colorado Avalanche – Ann Walton Kroenke
  • Columbus Blue Jackets – John P. McConnell
  • Edmonton Oilers – Daryl Katz
  • Los Angeles Kings – Philip Anschutz
  • Minnesota Wild – Craig Leipold
  • Montreal Canadiens – Geoff Molson
  • New York Islanders – Scott D. Malkin (approx. $200 million)
  • New York Rangers – James L. Dolan
  • Ottawa Senators – Eugene Melnyk
  • St. Louis Blues – Tom Stillman (net worth unknown)
  • Vancouver Canucks – Francesco Aquilini
  • Vegas Golden Knights – Bill Foley (approx. $500 million)
  • Winnipeg Jets – Mark Chipman (approx. $500 million) and David Thomson (*$36 billion*)
  • One name that is notable for its absence on this list is that of Calgary Flames ownership, the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation, which have now also made it crystal clear that they will leave arena staff high and dry.

    “Unless notified by your supervisor, all scheduled shifts are cancelled. CSEC will pay for your March 12, 2020 shift if you were scheduled to work as the notice of cancellation was less than the 24 hours required by Alberta Employment Standards. Any shifts on March 13, 2020 and beyond must be pre-approved by your supervisor,” states the email, which was obtained by Postmedia.

    “Alberta Employment Standards requires that employers provide 24 hours’ notice for cancellation of scheduled shifts. CSEC will pay employees where the notification of cancellation was less than 24 hours. No payment will be made for shifts cancelled with greater than 24 hours’ notice.”

    To be fair here there is a good argument to be paid that if the owners are not responsible for paying, they simply should feel no obligation to do so. However when you consider some of the examples that have already been made by other ownership groups including that of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers, Toronto Maple Leafs, and others, it does certainly paint them in an unfavorable light.