In my opinion, bombastic statements are generally a defence mechanism by those who feel put upon by their community. However, as minorities we rarely control society's prevailing narrative. Therefor our comments are often misinterpreted. Professional sports is big business and players who attract controversy tend to scare away sponsors.
From interpreting provincial labour laws (cited in the letters to the CHL and HC) which are being applied to define the relationship that exists between the 1405 players and their 60 teams, it is clear that players are employees and are owed a substantial amount of back pay, easily in the 10's of millions.