There’s a realistc chance the National Hockey League will be forced to cancel the remainder of the 2019-20 regular season and eventually the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
For a Bruins team that was the first, and only team to reach 100 points,—leading the second place Blues by six points for the race to the Presidents' Trophy— that’s a real shame.
It’s even more a shame for the fans, the referees, the employees of the organizations, employees of the buildings the 31 NHL teams call home and anyone else I may be forgetting.
Luckily for many employees affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, organizations are stepping up, doing the right thing, and providing reasonable means for employees who are out of work.
In the days following the shutdown of the NHL on March 12, teams around the league stepped up and formulated plans to compensate the thousands of part-time and game-day workers that make your experience at a professional hockey game an enjoyable one, and run the game we love from behind the scenes.
As the days passed following the league shutdown, more and more organizations released their financial plans.
With 31 teams in the league, SOMEONE had to be the 31st and final team to formulate, and release a financial plan. But in the manner it took for Delaware North—the parent company for both the Boston Bruins and TD Garden, owed by Jeremy Jacobs—to finally reveal their plan was absolutely disappointing.
The 31st of 31 teams to do so.
It took a push and shove and a “hey, what’s going on here” from the Massachusetts Attorney General to Delaware North before the company issued a statement with their financial plan.
The Bruins “plan” was laughable, one that did nothing for the impacted workers when they need it the most: now.
The package, released by Delaware North on Saturday revealed a $1.5 million fund for part-time Bruins and TD Garden workers.
However, there was an if thrown into the clause, and a big if.
Those part-time workers are only to be paid should the remaining six Bruins home games at TD Garden end up canceled.
Think that’s bad enough? Well, it got better on Wednesday thanks to another statement released by Delaware North.
Delaware North today announced temporary business stabilization measures relating to Boston Bruins and TD Garden full-time salaried associates due to the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 crisis on our operations.
Effective April 1, 2020, 68 of our full-time salaried associates will be placed on temporary leave, receiving one week of paid leave and eight weeks of full benefits. Additionally, as of April 1, 2020, 82 of our full-time salaried associates will receive an indefinite salary reduction. Those associates not impacted by the temporary leave or salary reduction have employment contracts.
As relayed to our associates today, none of these decisions were reached without difficult and painful deliberations. These measures are intended to be temporary with associate employment and compensation returning once our business resumes to its normal state from this unprecedented stoppage.
This decision comes just a day after the New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia 76ers changed their minds
24 hours after announcing a 20% pay cut for Devils and 76ers employees.
This news also comes a day after a Boston Globe report
revealed that TD Garden ushers have been laid off.
Delaware North, a company with a revenue in the ballpark of $3 billion, continues to swing and miss when it comes to doing the right thing during a time where their employees need them more than ever.
Hopefully, like it did for the Devils and 76ers, the pushback on this decision will force the Bruins to reverse course and create a more formidable plan for their employees.
But I wouldn’t bet Jacobs’ $3+ billion net worth on it.