Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Iain Macintyre at the Vancouver Sun,
Eleven years ago, when the Vancouver Canucks beat the Chicago Blackhawks 2-1 in overtime, Trevor Linden got into Chris Chelios’s face after the winning goal and the pair tussled.
Chelios threw the first punch and, after the players were separated, accused Linden of covering up and refusing to fight. And that was the high point of their relationship. It has devolved the last two years as Chelios leads his crusade for justice within a National Hockey League Players’ Association that Linden, as the union’s former president, led through a labour war that scuttled the 2004-05 season.
Sunday, Linden seemed ready for the fight.
“It’s easy to pile on,” Linden said before facing Chelios and the Detroit Red Wings Sunday night at GM Place. “I will say this: I’m extremely proud of the decisions the [NHLPA] executive committee made. I think we made, in very difficult times, good decisions for the players.”
from the Detroit Free Press,
“I’m very happy with our choice of Paul Kelly. I’m looking forward to working with him and having him represent us as a union. At least we have a leader now, and we’ll look for direction from him.”
Chelios said Kelly’s arrival was reminiscent of Goodenow taking over in 1992 for the disgraced Alan Eagleson.
“I look back,” Chelios said, “and it was the same thing when we hired Bob Goodenow — we’d gone through a lot in the Eagleson era, and then Bob was hired — pretty much same situation, basically. It’s history repeating itself. Look at what he did for us. Hopefully, Paul Kelly can follow that same path that we did with Bob.”
from Pierre LeBrun of the CP via the Globe and Mail,
Lindros said Wednesday he would welcome a chance to work for the union in whatever role. “I would look forward to something along those lines. This has been really interesting. I’ve learned a lot about the other side of things.”
more on the work Lindros has done with the NHLPA…
Update 11:15pm ET (by Alanah):
From Darren Dreger at TSN,
He hasn’t made it official yet, but Eric Lindros is calling it quits and – if all things work out for him, he’s headed toward a new career with the NHLPA.
Following Paul Kelly’s introduction as Executive Director of the Player’s Association, Eric Lindros stated bluntly his playing career is behind him - with too many health issues to entertain the notion of a return.
From the NHLPA,
The search process, conducted by a five-member committee of NHLPA members and the executive search firm Reilly Partners of Chicago, culminated with the introduction of Kelly at today’s media conference in Toronto.
“It is a distinct honour and privilege to be chosen by the players to serve as the Executive Director of their union,” said Kelly “I look forward to advocating tirelessly for the membership as we prepare to enter what I believe will be an exciting and prosperous new chapter for the NHLPA.
added 1:01pm, from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail,
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
Kelly’s to-do list must begin with making certain the players get what they are entitled to under the current CBA. He also needs to restructure the business end of NHLPA and its licensing arm (something that has fallen into the leadership abyss) and he needs to tell Commissioner Gary Bettman and Deputy Commissioner Bil Daly where to stuff it when they try something wrong-headed, non-sensical or illegal.
On top, he needs to find a way to keep some 700 members interested enough in the process so that the league no longer views then as little more than mobile skate racks (mostly of the unheated variety). Do that and the union will be on track to handle the next negotiation with the kind of unity the management might respect.
Lawyers representing Toronto-based player agent Don Meehan have issued ‘‘notices of libel’’ against Detroit Red Wing player Chris Chelios and an unspecified number of media outlets.
‘‘We have sent out notices alleging libel to Mr. Chelios and various media,’’ said Meehan’s lawyer, Graham Smith of Goodman’s law firm in Toronto.
added 6:08pm, from the Hockey News,
Chelios said after learning the news Tuesday afternoon that he was misquoted and has “accused Don Meehan of nothing.
“It was always, ‘If he undermined the union’ and ‘If he acted inappropriately,’ ” Chelios said. “If there was any miscommunication in my quotes…I haven’t accused him of anything and I spoke to (the reporter) from the Free Press about it. He hasn’t been accused of anything by me.”
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Even before the players had finished voting on the nomination of Paul Kelly to become the NHLPA’s new executive director, the presumptive leader of the union was being warned last week by members of the Canadian media to seek compromise in his dealings with the league, not to be confrontational, and last but not least, not to become a clone of Bob Goodenow, for goodness sakes.
Right, that’s all the players need, someone like Goodenow to look after their interests rather than his own, the way Alan Eagleson did and Ted Saskin appears in many cases to have done, though in no way approaching the felonious maneuverings of the man Kelly helped prosecute as assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts.
from Loose Change at the Hockey News,
Basically, enough is enough. There’s a critical mass in most everything in life and the innate ability to recognize when you’ve indeed reached that point is as important as knowing the precise time to let go of a hand grenade.
NHLPA IV is set to open soon and frankly, I think the franchise is already dead….
You probably remember the original NHLPA I: The Evil Empire versus The Embezzler. In that classic (filming started in 1967), the National Hockey League battled the original version of the PA in a timeless David versus Goliath tale.
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
Regardless of whether Meehan is a target for decertification, it is clear some player agents believe the union – and rumored new executive director Paul Kelly – must go beyond a report from investigator Sheila Block and further delve into the circumstances that led to Saskin replacing predecessor Bob Goodenow as NHLPA chief.
Minnesota-based agent Neil Sheehy is one of those people.
“The Block Report established that there were a lot of documents that were shredded, and hard drives that were destroyed,” Sheehy told TheHockeyNews.com. “So the question is, how do we get all the information out?
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
Thanks to Chelios and the members of the search committee, the NHLPA is working toward remaking itself into a voice that must be heard regarding the best interests of the players and, perhaps even the best interest of the game.
If Kelly does become the new boss of the NHLPA, it’s clear that he won’t be just like the old boss (Saskin) or even the boss before him (Goodenow) and certainly nothing like the boss before either of those men (Eagleson).
He will be the boss because the players, through due process, will have determined that he is.
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.
Email Paul anytime at email@example.com