What began as a good summer for those that work for the Minnesota Wild has the potential to turn into a rather bleak holiday season.
It was all smiles and sunshine this July when the Wild signed prized free agents Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to identical contracts worth $98 million each, including signing bonuses of $10 million to each player that were due August 18.
Those rather healthy (some would say, obscene) bonuses were payable no matter what. So lockout or no, Parise and Suter would have a nice chunk of walking around money without ever having to play a game for the club.
Fast forward to today, and the smiles that the Wild staffers were wearing have most likely turned to frowns as they found out that, unless the lockout is resolved very quickly, they will be facing a 20 percent pay cut (via Associated Press).
I understand the lockout is a hard time for the NHL owners. After all, their buildings are sitting empty, but after writing two checks totaling $20 million to players that have done nothing for your club, it takes some huge stones to walk into a room full of employees and tell them, sorry, but times are tough and we have no money for you. And oh, by the way, have a happy holiday!
One has to wonder what went through the heads of the Wild brain trust when they made this decision. Did no one think about the fact that they shelled out $20 MILLION to two people in August for nothing?
I understand that business is business, and the rich get richer and all those other sorry lines that will spill forth from the mouths of apologists, but c’mon, you’re really going to shaft the little guy here, the ones that make sure all the small things work on a daily basis and attempt to do it with a straight face?
If the fans are looking for another reason to find the NHL ownership group distasteful, they need to look no further than the Minnesota Wild’s latest move.
Nice work, scrooge.