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What's the deal with hockey arbitration, really?

James Mirtle hailed mainly for his blog, is also an exceptionally talented journalist for the Globe and Mail.  In this article, Mirtle gives us all a better idea as to what goes into arbitration hearings.  

As you may recall, Marc-Andre Fleury and the Penguins filed for arbitration before the UFA deadline.  Things were settled beforehand on their own terms, but had this gone to 'court', you have to wonder how the conversation would've swayed.

New York Islanders goaltender Tommy Salo had the most infamous hearing in the summer of 1997. Salo, the Islanders' starting goaltender at the time, left the proceedings in tears after being ripped by general manager Mike Milbury in what was called "the most horrific character assassination ever seen in an arbitration."