Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 07/24/05 at 11:03 AM ET
National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman is certain to reap high praise in the coming weeks for a job well done. The league is up and running again, mainly because he unloaded so many rights on Bob Goodenow that the Players' Association chief was begging for a left. The NHL should be in better shape now that a new collective bargaining agreement has been reached and the rulebook has been rewritten. The league has regained financial sanity. It appears everything is back in order. It's all true, but this is only faint praise for a league that fell apart under Bettman's watch. Do we honor a man for extinguishing a fire . . . or admonish him for starting the blaze? Bettman did some fine work during the past 10 months, but it was necessary only because he failed during his first 10 years. In fact, he still hasn't led the league to safety. He has merely proved that he owns a compass.
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