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Category: NHLPA

Change Needed At The Top

from Eric Duhatschek of The Athletic,

At this juncture, there are only two paths forward.

One, which is the NHL’s usual default position, is to take the easy way out. That’s happening already, with the league and the players’ association issuing carefully worded mea culpas about what happened to Beach and promising to institute stricter measures to ensure something similar doesn’t happen again. Circulating memos to staff always ensures major changes in corporate culture, right?

The second is to find new leaders.

Sometimes, you reach a moment in time when you need a clean break from past administrations.

This feels like that moment.

After the NHL lost the entire 2004-05 season to a lockout, I wrote a column for The Globe and Mail that was headlined, “Fire Them Both.” In those days my column ran behind a paywall. I begged the editor in charge to accidentally leave the key symbolizing a paywalled story off of this one so everyone could read it. He did. The column essentially concluded that both Bettman and the then executive director of the NHLPA, Bob Goodenow, had failed at their jobs because they couldn’t negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement, unnecessarily costing owners, players and fans an entire season. I argued that such a monumental failure would cost any CEO in any business their jobs. It should be the same for these two. Goodenow was ousted shortly thereafter, but Bettman has continued to run the NHL, for better or worse, since then.

Calling for change then made little difference.

It probably won’t now either.

Bettman’s hard line in those labor negotiations ushered in the NHL’s salary-cap era, and now, every transaction that happens in the league is filtered through a team’s payroll. You lose a key player, such as the Lightning did with Kucherov a year ago, and the most important person in your organization isn’t the general manager, but the accountant who devises the strategy that allows you to put a player on IR for the entire year, but have him ready to go come playoff time.

Nowadays, hockey talk isn’t about the game on the ice nearly as much as it should be.

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Will The Heat Turn Up On Donald Fehr?

from Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff,

Compared to Quenneville and Cheveldayoff, the level of scrutiny has been quite low on the role NHL Players’ Association executive director Donald Fehr played in the investigation’s report.

The temperature has been turned up on Fehr, though, now under increasing fire both internally and externally upon closer inspection of the Jenner & Block report.

Sources tell Daily Faceoff that internal support for Fehr among NHLPA staff has waned in light of Fehr’s “lack of recollection” surrounding the contact that was made with him in connection with the incident.

There have been internal questions raised as to whether Fehr would or should survive the week at the helm of the player’s union.

“I know I reported every single detail to an individual at the NHLPA, who I was put in contact with after I believe two different people talked to Don Fehr,” Beach said in an emotional interview this week, revealing himself publicly as the victim. “For [Fehr] to turn his back on the players when his one job is to protect the players at all costs, I don’t know how that can be your leader.”

The crux of the issue: is Fehr systematically complicit in allowing Aldrich to continue to move freely in the hockey community as a sexual predator?

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Don Fehr Statement

TORONTO (Oct. 27, 2021) – National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) Executive Director Don Fehr issued the following statement today:

“Kyle Beach has been through a horrific experience and has shown true courage in telling his story. There is no doubt that the system failed to support him in his time of need, and we are part of that system.

In his media interview, Mr. Beach stated that several months after the incident he told someone at the NHLPA the details of what happened to him. He is referring to one of the program doctors with the NHL/NHLPA player assistance program. While this program is confidential between players and the doctors, the grave nature of this incident should have resulted in further action on our part. The fact that it did not was a serious failure. I am truly sorry, and I am committed to making changes to ensure it does not happen again.”

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Report- NHL Players Will Be Permitted To Be In Gambling Ads

from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,

The NHLPA and NHL have reached an agreement under which players are permitted to participate in advertising related to sports wagering, Slap Shots has learned.

A memo sent to all players and agents on Friday outlines the agreement that comes with several guidelines, the most pertinent being that players are not permitted to be depicted “engaging in betting activities” and that the player’s endorsement, “does not promote betting on NHL games.”

I don’t love it, not at all, but if all sports leagues and individual club owners are cashing in, then there is no reason the players should not get a slice of the pie.

more topics including Mike Bossy

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NHL May Change COVID Protocol Testing

from Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff,

What do Nathan MacKinnon, Mark Scheifele and Jeff Carter have in common?

Aside from being all-world centers, all three are among a handful of vaccinated NHL players who have missed games in the first two weeks of the season for a positive COVID-19 test despite being asymptomatic.

Their absences have wreaked havoc on their teams – from a competitive perspective, with their rosters and salary caps, in addition to a health and lifestyle perspective, triggering additional protocols and restrictions.

That has led to frustration from players and front offices alike.

Change could be on the horizon.

Daily Faceoff has learned the NHL and its team of medical experts are currently debating the merits of testing asymptomatic players.

In other words, it’s possible that the NHL modifies the protocol only to test players and team personnel for COVID-19 who present symptoms.

The parties involved, including the NHL Players’ Association, will be jointly reviewing the testing requirements as of Nov. 1. It’s difficult to predict the likelihood of a protocol change for asymptomatic testing because we’re told even the experts have a split opinion.

continued

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Afternoon Line- Robin Lehner

 

added 5:04pm, below, watch what Duncan Keith had to say on the topic.

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NHL/NHLPA Announce Transition Rules And Critical Dates

NEW YORK/TORONTO (Sept. 29, 2021) – The National Hockey League (NHL) and National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) announced today transition rules and critical dates for the 2021-22 season.

The full text for both items can be found here, with several critical dates noted below.

REMINDER: The NHL previously released the COVID-19 Protocol for the 2021-22 season.

Critical Dates for 2021-22 Season

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Critical Dates

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NHL Players On The Vaccine Policy

from Joshua Clipperton of the CP at TSN,

Vaccinated players that test positive in 2021-22 for COVID-19 will be treated as having hockey injuries and still get paid, while their unvaccinated counterparts are set to have their movements restricted on the road.

Regular testing for the coronavirus will continue for vaccinated players.

Canucks forward Jason Dickinson said the decision to role up his sleeve was an easy one.

"The vaccine works — it works," he said. "There's a lot of people that want to argue it. And I guess that's their right, but there's a lot of people that are losing their rights right now by having to wait (the unvaccinated) out.

"It's slowing down everybody else's life."

But Winnipeg Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck, whose team is fully vaccinated, said he felt pressured into getting the shot.

"I'm not anti-vaxx by any means, but I'd like to have that decision for myself," he said. "I had just gotten COVID and gotten over it, and then I had to get the (vaccine), which made me feel like I had COVID all over again. If I could have had at least some time to choose, maybe I would have got it (when) they recommend — three months later.

"I would have liked (the NHLPA) to have helped us a little more ... I just feel it could have been worked out a little bit better."

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Covid Protocols For This Season

via Michael Russo tweets,

Reading the NHL COVID-19 protocols, let's just say vaccinated and unvaccinated players will be treated very differently this season.

Different protocols, no pay if unvaccinated player gets sick, 50% of costs associated will be charged to players' share of HRR, etc.

NHL media that are fully vaccinated and masked will have access to players this season in the locker room, the NHL protocols say

 

added 7:10pm, from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,

Continue Reading »

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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