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Gary Bettman On Robin Lehner And Jack Eichel

from Sportsnet,

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman joined The Jeff Marek Show on Monday and was asked about his perspective on Lehner's position.

"We take his comments seriously and we'd like in short order to be in a conversation with him so we can hear his concerns directly and we're going to follow up to see what merit there may be to his concerns," Bettman said. "You don't have to tweet to get our attention. We have an 800 number people can call. You can call us directly, we're an open book. But if he has concerns we want to hear them and see how they need to be addressed."...

Bettman was asked for his latest insight into the ongoing Eichel situation.

"We're pretty up to speed in terms of what's going on," Bettman said. "And there's a legitimate disagreement among doctors as to what the course of treatment would be best, both in the short-term and long-term and that's something everybody's wrestling with.

"It's a terrible situation. I don't think it's fair to point the finger at anybody in terms of who's right and wrong. I think everybody's approaching this with the best intentions and that the injury is complex both in its diagnosis and its treatment and I think people need to be a little more patient."


Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
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If it’s this complex then he should retire.  I don’t see what’s so hard here.  Tie goes to the person who’s body it is.  If there’s legitimate disagreement for what is actually best for the player (he says best intentions not best intentions for the player)

Sabres have been a dumpster fire since Pegula bought them.  Bad decision after bad decision for their own club.  Why TF would a player concede to their decision making on his health?

And clearly there are some clubs that have systemic cultural issues in a big way that have been able to skate on by because of where they sit in the social order of the league.  It’d be real hard for me to believe this is another situation of the team or league doing what’s best for the players.

Posted by ThatGuy on 10/05/21 at 09:14 AM ET


The Pegula’s history speaks for itself. Being rich is not the only trait necessary to own/ run a sports franchise.

Posted by pnwwing on 10/05/21 at 12:14 PM ET

d ca's avatar

Tie goes to the person who’s body it is.

Posted by ThatGuy on 10/05/21 at 09:14 AM ET

Unfortunately, not as the NHLPA bargained that away recently. Under the CBA, teams have the final say on medical surgeries a player must have if they have an NHL contract. If Eichel wants to forgo the $50M in guaranteed money and undergo the surgery of his choice—there is nothing the team can do to stop him. Team doctors however are bound by medical ethics that they can’t operate on a mentally sane individual against their consent—-unless they are minors or a few other situations that don’t apply here.

Eichel wants a cervical artificial disc replacement (CADR) vs the team’s desire for him to have an Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF). Both surgeries have 90 plus % success rates. The main difference is that with ACDF the bones must fuse and that complications can arrive as a result of this—plus having to wait for them to fuse. Complications can result in additional surgeries.

The player can seek a 2nd opinion. The team must pay all expenses if the player chooses the 2nd opinion among their approved list. VS the player having to pay all expenses if he chooses his own doctor. Once rendered the team doctors are supposed to give the 2nd opinion “serious consideration”—which is very, very vague. If there is still disagreement among the doctors, the player can take the dispute to a third party who would provide an opinion. But there is nothing in the CBA that says the team doctors must change their minds even if two medical opinions don’t concur with their treatment recommendations.

So, no tie doesn’t go to the person whose body it is—-it remains with the team’s doctors if the player wants to keep his NHL guaranteed contract.

Posted by d ca on 10/06/21 at 04:41 AM ET

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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.

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