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Thanks You Gary Bettman

from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press,

This week, Bettman predicted the salary cap will rise to $71 million for the 2014-15 season and already the rumblings are it could shoot as high as $80 million for the following campaign.

The upshot is there will soon be more and more $10 million per season players dotting NHL rosters. The league minimum will rise at some point so every player in the NHL earns a seven-figure salary.

The man players were so quick to say was ruining the game and robbing their bank accounts has mapped out a strategy where all 30 teams in the NHL can claim to be on the road to financial health.

Lost in the players' rhetoric last winter was the fact many were being paid by franchises that couldn't cover the cheques as stand alone businesses.

Bettman's job was to make sure all league members could operate as sound businesses.

That, and the largesse bestowed upon the game's players, will be his lasting legacy.

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Filed in: NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

NHLJeff's avatar

It’s nice to see someone write something level-headed about Bettman.  It’s a short article, and I urge everyone to read it.  While he may not be a likable guy, the man has undeniably done a lot of good for the sport and the players.

Posted by NHLJeff from Pens fan in Chicago, IL on 12/12/13 at 01:44 PM ET

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It’s good that Bettman’s made a lot of money for everyone involved (except the fans of course).  There’s no doubt that the league is better off because of that.  However, he’s done a poor job with the product on the ice.

There’s still way too many issues with the game itself.  Officials who can’t find consistency from game to game, period to period, or minute to minute more often than not.  A Player Safety Department that can’t seem to decide what deserves a 5 game suspension, or 2 games, or nothing at all.  A points/standings system that makes it a bad decision to open up the game offensively and instead has teams sitting back defensively to make sure and get the loser point.  The ludicrous skills competition gimmick to decide games.  And that’s just the few things I could think of right away.

Bettman’s made the league money.  Great.  My question is and always has been, would someone else in his position have made money for the league while also making the game itself better?  Until the game itself is more enjoyable to watch on a nightly basis regardless of the teams playing, then I still feel Bettman’s done a poor job.

Posted by Valek from Chicago on 12/12/13 at 02:29 PM ET

NHLJeff's avatar

You make some valid points. While Bettman is in charge as a whole, I think having a fresher former player in Campbell’s role of Director of Hockey Ops could do wonders as far as the on-ice product.  Bettman and Collins can continue to handle the business side, which they’re doing very well with, and the new guy could hopefully bring the same type of success to the on-ice product.

Posted by NHLJeff from Pens fan in Chicago, IL on 12/12/13 at 02:33 PM ET

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A fresh face couldn’t hurt, Jeff.  There just seems like there’s too much talk and not enough action these days.  Everyone’s afraid to change something not directly involved with player safety without talking it to death for over a year.  That’s not just the league though, the NHLPA is guilty of this as well.

Posted by Valek from Chicago on 12/12/13 at 02:47 PM ET

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I wrote the exact same thing last week on this blog. Lawless must be a reader.  It’s about time fans, players and media applaud Gary for his business acumen.

Posted by jkm2011 on 12/12/13 at 03:14 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

I wrote the exact same thing last week on this blog. Lawless must be a reader.  It’s about time fans, players and media applaud Gary for his business acumen.

Lawless has a long, long history (like two lockouts ago) of being Bettman-friendly to a fault. I don’t think anybody around here serves as his muse.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 12/12/13 at 03:25 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I wrote the exact same thing last week on this blog. Lawless must be a reader.  It’s about time fans, players and media applaud Gary for his business acumen.

Posted by jkm2011 on 12/12/13 at 02:14 PM ET

“Gary Lawless is a big fan of mine” isn’t exactly something I’d be bragging about, even if it were crazy manufactured horseshit.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 12/12/13 at 03:28 PM ET

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Lawless has a long, long history (like two lockouts ago) of being Bettman-friendly to a fault.

And others have long, long histories of being Bettman-antagonistic to a fault.

If, you know, a person’s past invalidates the possibility their comments in the present can be correct.

Reasonable Premises:
1)Financially Bettman’s done a great job for the NHL. 
2)On-ice Bettman’s done a poor to awful job for the NHL.

It’d be great if rather than just placing ad hominem attacks the actual substance of the comment would be addressed.  The problem with that, obviously, is addressing the merits of the issue would likely require people who intensely and personally dislike Bettman to compliment him, even tangentially.

The horror.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 12/12/13 at 04:59 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

It’d be great if rather than just placing ad hominem attacks the actual substance of the comment would be addressed.

Not to bother you again, Mr. Pot, but the substance of Gary Lawless’ article states that the Stanley Cup Winning captain should scrape to the Commissioner before he receives the cup and kiss his boots in thanks for how much richer Bettman made him.

The substance of Gary Lawless’ post, which is the topic of this comments section is that Gary Bettman has essentially single-handedly delivered heaven on Earth as far as the financials of the NHL go.

Can you scrape yourself away from wagging your finger at others long enough to share your views on that or would addressing the merits of the issue likely require you, who intensely and personally dislikes the NHLPA to understand their position on the matter, even tangentially?

 

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 12/12/13 at 05:17 PM ET

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If, you know, a person’s past invalidates the possibility their comments in the present can be correct.

Is this why JJ is calling you Mr. Pot?

Reasonable Premises:
1)Yes, because you are made from black iron.
2)No, because you are made from soft cream cheese.

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 12/13/13 at 05:57 PM 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.

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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