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Matt Light was disappointed by Robert Kraft’s absence at labor talks

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While the final hours of the collective bargaining agreement ticked down a week and a half ago, Patriots owner Robert Kraft was at a previously planned trade mission to Israel with the Massachusetts Governor and other business leaders.

Kraft got his updates over the phone.  In the end, we don’t think it’s a huge deal that one member of the league’s executive committee wasn’t able to attend the talks.

One of Kraft’s employees, however, admitted he was disappointed when asked about it by Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe.

“No doubt, 100 percent. I’m not going to lie to you,” left tackle Matt Light said.

One of the common complaints from the players involves the lack of owner attendance at the mediated sessions.  It’s a fair point and one of the strongest arguments in the player’s favor.

“Look, again, like [Mike] Vrabel stated, like everyone else has said, we had people in that room that could get a deal done at any point. Do I know how they’re structured within the league? No, I have no clue.

“But I can tell you one thing: they [league negotiators] didn’t seem to have the ability to do any of that when they had to the leave the room, make a phone call, you guys representing the league. If it was men, I was in that model, I would have every one of my guys in those seats making sure that we had one voice and we could get a deal done,” Light said.

The big questions now: When will the two sides truly start to negotiate again?  And who will be the new voices?

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16 Responses to “Matt Light was disappointed by Robert Kraft’s absence at labor talks”
  1. 3octaveFart says: Mar 20, 2011 2:25 PM

    That’s one way to show your resolve to reach a deal.
    Don’t even freakin’ show up.

  2. footballfan292 says: Mar 20, 2011 2:28 PM

    The lawyers need to get out. Lawyers on both sides gain nothing with a quick settlement. They will drag it out on and on and on. A lawyer is paid by how many hours they put into a case, not what kind of deal they get out of it. Keep that in mind.

    As long as this thing remains in the hands of the lawyers and the courts, we will not have any chance of an agreement before fall at the earliest.

  3. duanethomas says: Mar 20, 2011 2:33 PM

    Does every labor post have to end with “When are the 2 sides going to negotiate again?” Or maybe public pressure will get the 2 sides talking again? Nothing is going to happen until April 6th. They are not talking until then, no matter what anyone says. The NFLPA* has 1,900 member give or take plus management and attorneys. There are 32 owners, plus management and attorneys..You will get a statement every day from one of them, but it will not change anything. APRIL 6th is the DATE.

  4. hail2tharedskins says: Mar 20, 2011 2:36 PM

    It is no more realistic to expect all 31/32 owners to be present for the negotiations as it is to expect all 1500 or so players (or even one player from each team) to be present. That is why both sides have paid negotiators, to negotiate on their behalf. When the players fire all their negotiators, then it will be reasonable for the players to expect the owners to be there.

    *On a side note, I believe Kraft’s presence in Israel was of more importance than attending negotiation sessions anyway, there are more important things than football.

  5. hail2tharedskins says: Mar 20, 2011 2:40 PM

    footballfan292,

    while i agree with your overall point about the lawyers. I will disagree about your timeline for when this gets resolved. If the players’ motion for an injunction to prevent the lockout is denied in court on April 6, this will be resolved long before the fall. The players have zero intention on continuing this legal battle if they won’t be able to collect paychecks while they do so. If the lockout remains, the players will be back at the table within a week and a deal with be reached before camps are scheduled to open!

  6. 4jack4 says: Mar 20, 2011 2:49 PM

    they both are posturing, so as to be looked on favourably at the April 6 th court hearings.
    Thus No one biting in case the screw it up.

  7. wryly1 says: Mar 20, 2011 3:15 PM

    hailtotheredskins

    Congrats. That may be the single dumbest thing written about the situation yet. Only one side should be represented by negotiators??? Cue the twilight zone theme.

    Do you not understand that the owners who are ready and willing to negotiate a settlement were not present presnt during mediation because the hard line owners who don’t want to were taking the lead? Hellooo?

  8. realfann says: Mar 20, 2011 4:33 PM

    Most players don’t get paid until the games start.

    Yes there are a few exceptions for work out bonuses but by and large the players work for food & board through training camp.

    So from a players perspective, there’s months to go before this hurts.

    And if the injunction is granted, the owners cannot stop the games or stop the players being paid. So the players will not suffer at all.

  9. georgeblanda says: Mar 20, 2011 4:37 PM

    I have to side with the Players on this issue. Yet, it is certainly not about Mr. Kraft, who had a true and legitimate conflict. However, anyone who has ever negotiated anything knows that the first thing you insist on is that the decision makers be in the room during negotiation. If the players have given their executive committee decision making authority, the owners should also give this same authority to their committee of owners and they should all show up. It is no big surprise that the mediation didn’t work. The owners purposely delayed at every steps by creating a “false wall” in the negotiations by requiring their negotiators to always say, I will have to run that idea past the owners. Even the Commissioner has said that was all he could say to the players for the past year of meetings with the players for each team. It is a fairly common stall tactic used to frustrate the other side during negotiations.

  10. macgee10 says: Mar 20, 2011 4:44 PM

    His trip to Israel I’m sure was for a good cause and I’m all for it, but he did pick one of worst times to go haha.

  11. wryly1 says: Mar 20, 2011 5:22 PM

    I admit I’m taking a wild, uneducated guess here, but I can’t see fans filling stadiums and networks paying billions to watch the owners and their lawyers at work.

  12. Matt-NC says: Mar 20, 2011 5:23 PM

    Owners are playing the high-stakes negotiation game and are good at it. Players are in over their heads and don’t want to admit.

    They are showing the players are not on the same level of the owners. When the player cry the owners weren’t there, it plays into the owners’ hands.

    Not saying it’s right, but that’s what is going on.

  13. richm2256 says: Mar 20, 2011 7:03 PM

    Matt Light is disappointed in Robert Kraft????

    That’s ironic!

    I like Matt Light a whole lot less when he’s not on a football field. Or when his agent talks for him.

  14. doe22us says: Mar 20, 2011 7:26 PM

    Hey Matt knock knock .. Kraft makes more money in his products than the Patriots.. why go to a series of meetings when he knew the potential outcome whiles millions were being negotiated in Israel. I am sure he was represented by his son or someone else

  15. doe22us says: Mar 20, 2011 7:31 PM

    Products i mean other ventures

  16. buddynorth says: Mar 21, 2011 7:34 AM

    At this point- who cares about football? Japanese people have something real to worry about. Let us Americans find something worthwhile to worry about other than ball players living paycheck to paycheck, not affording health insurance,, and missing out on thier work… Whaaaa! Join reality like the rest of us.

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