Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 09/16/12 at 08:59 AM ET
from Michael Grange of Sportsnet,
Every single contract an NHL player signs has a stamp of Gary Bettman's signature along the bottom of it. Every contract that has come to life in the past seven years carries his legal mark of approval.
But over the seven-year life of Bettman's masterpiece, the CBA that expired at 11:59 p.m. Saturday night, all those contracts -- the Ilya Kovalchuks and the Taylor Halls and the Shea Webers -- have served as reminders of what he did wrong in the spring of 2005.
Now the chance has come for Bettman to get it right; to auto-correct the past and rewrite the future. If only he can grind the NHLPA under his heel on more time, all will be in order in his lawyerly world.
The question as the NHL heads for its third lockout in Bettman's nearly 20 years as commissioner is if he's going to try and be right or if he'll allow himself to do right.
It's only the near-term future of the sport and his legacy that hang in the balance, potentially. No sweat.
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