Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Andrew Gross of the Record,
Now running the NHL Players' Association and not baseball's players' union, Don Fehr could defer all questions on Alex Rodriguez and his looming suspension in the Biogenesis scandal on the basis of not being in the loop.
However, Fehr made it clear that A-Rod had every right to appeal the suspension, something the other 13 players handed bans chose not to do.
"All I can say is that I have complete confidence in the team that's there to represent the players to the best of their ability," Fehr said Thursday at Yankee Stadium as he was on hand for the announcement of outdoor hockey games between the Rangers and Devils on Jan. 26 and the Rangers and Islanders on Jan. 29.
"Any player, if he wants to have a hearing, it's an absolute right to have a hearing and the facts will be what the facts are," Fehr added....
Fehr had little to say when asked about the lack of performance-enhancing drug scandals in hockey, other than the NHLPA was satisfied with hockey's drug-testing program.
"Maybe the culture is different," Fehr said.
a bit more...
from Lewie Krashinsky of Sportsnet,
Organized by Dominic Moore, Smashfest is a charity ping-pong tournament created to raise funds for concussion research. Numerous players, including Martin St. Louis, Phil Kessel, David Clarkson and Kevin Westgarth, attended the second annual event Thursday.
“Great to see (Bettman) supporting a great charity event at Smashfest. Maybe we can get a dunk tank or something and make a little more money off of it,” quipped Westgarth, a tough Hurricanes winger who was heavily involved in the labour negotiations. “We want to bridge the gaps in our relationship, and hopefully (Bettman’s support for concussion research) can go a long way to doing that.”
The physical nature of hockey will naturally lead to concussions, Westgarth conceded, but that frequency and severity of head injuries is something worth trying to reduce.
“It’s an incredibly important topic to our membership in the PA. We’re going to do everything we can to make sure concussions are as small an issue as possible and that guys get treated properly and have long lives after their very short careers.”
“Although there were many details to discuss with our partners at the NHL and NHLPA, there was never any doubt in my mind that we would not continue the tradition from Nagano, Salt Lake City, Turin and Vancouver.”
“The modern Olympic era is about sportive competition on the highest possible level. This is what fans around the world expect from a 100-metre race or downhill skiing and this is also what they are entitled to expect from our sport.”
“It is the obligation of the IIHF towards our fans that the biggest sports show on earth has the best players and towards our member associations that they are able to select the best players that their educational systems have developed. I would like to thank NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr for their co-operation.”
-IIHF President and IOC Executive Committee Member René Fasel. More from the IIHF.
NEW YORK/TORONTO (July 19, 2013) -- The National Hockey League Players' Association (NHLPA) and the National Hockey League (NHL) announced today that an agreement has been reached with the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to secure participation of NHL players in the upcoming 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
NHL players will be available to the 12 participating IIHF Member National Associations for the men's Olympic ice hockey tournament (February 12-23, 2014). This will mark the fifth consecutive time dating back to Nagano 1998 that NHL players have participated in the Olympics. More than 120 NHL players are expected to compete for their respective nations in Sochi.
"The National Hockey League features the most international player population in professional sports, and our outstanding athletes take tremendous pride in representing their homelands on the global stage," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. "The decision to participate in the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi was in many ways a difficult one, but one that we know will be well received by our Players and, most importantly, by the vast majority of our fans and sports fans everywhere."
from Kevin Woodley of InGoal Magazine,
Henrik Lundqvist isn’t worried about the impending changes to goaltending equipment in the NHL – as long the New York Rangers’ star gets enough time to adjust to them.
“If they change it, as long as I have the new gear early August it should be fine,” Lundqvist wrote in an email to InGoal Magazine from his native Sweden.
It’s no longer a question of “if” when it comes to goalie equipment changes.
According to several sources close to the ongoing equipment talks, the NHL Players’ Association informally approved a reduction in the overall height of its goaltender’s pads at its meetings last week after an internal survey showed strong support for change. Unfortunately, that polling – and therefore the approval – wasn’t specific enough for the NHL, leaving questions about interpretation and implementation of the new pad height restrictions, while also failing to address the League’s request for smaller kneepads.
It set up a potentially contentious meeting between the two sides in New York late this week. Meanwhile equipment manufacturers, many with goalies already wanting new gear for summer skates, await final measurements so they can start producing next year’s equipment.
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
Back in 2003, after a lengthy and diligent study, the National Hockey League’s Injury Analysis Panel concluded that hard, bulbous moldings on elbow and shoulder pads were more likely to cause injury than soft Styrofoam, when applied directly to an opponent’s head.
Hard is more likely to injure than soft, the data showed. Another unintended finding, in documents obtained by Sportsnet.ca at the time, showed fire to be hot.
Yes, nobody does committees like the NHL.
Over the years, we have been blessed with such entities as the NHL/NHLPA Equipment Working Group, the Joint Health and Safety Committee, something called a “Blue Ribbon” committee, and various incarnations of the politically divided Competition Committee.
How many times have all sides convened for “frank and open discussion of the issues?” And how many times has anything tangible occurred?
All the topics of the day are brought up by Schneider and Campbell.
added 5:34pm, via TSN,
The reasoning behind the proposal of shallower nets appears to be aimed at giving players more room to maneuver behind the goal.
According to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger the Committee discussed some issues in conjunction with the mandatory wearing of visors including the mandatory wearing of helmets during fights. He stated those rules are not yet at the stage when they would be enforced.
All proposed changes are subject to approval from the League's Board of Governors.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
It has long been thought that when visors were eventually mandated in the NHL the rule would only apply to new players entering the league.
But might everyone be forced to wear one starting next season?
The NHL Players’ Association is currently polling its membership on that very question and will take the results to next week’s competition committee meeting, according to a source.
A survey being circulated by the union has asked players to indicate whether they favour the status quo (freedom of choice), the introduction of a rule grandfathering visors for rookies or mandatory use by all.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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