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CRITICISM OF BETTMAN GETS STRONGER THE FURTHER NORTH YOU GO
Published September 29, 1994
MONTREAL: David Johnston writes that Bettman "is poised to become the first person in the history of hockey not to get a two-minute penalty for blatant delay of game" (MONTREAL GAZETTE, 9/29). TORONTO: Christie Blatchford writes that Bettman "doesn't understand our [Canadian] culture, the hockey culture, and makes virtually no effort now to disguise his lack of interest." Blatchford warns that Bettman "better not push his luck": "If the Commissioner wants a fight, he shall have it. He may not be able to tiptoe through the blood so easily" (TORONTO SUN, 9/29). VANCOUVER: Mike Beamish calls Bettman a "mouse who can roar" (VANCOUVER SUN, 9/29). NEW YORK: Joe LaPointe writes: "Although somewhat understandable, the personal criticism of Bettman is somewhat simplistic" (N.Y. TIMES, 9/29). Frank Brown: "Starting the season without an agreement is suicide" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 9/29). Larry Brooks criticizes the NHLPA: "This union's righteous stance against negotiating a cap on its members' income has no basis in real collective-bargaining history." Brooks adds: "The fehr [sic] of many NHL management people is being realized: that Goodenow is more concerned with his and his union's image with Major League Baseball Players' Association executive director Don Fehr and his striking ballplayers than he is in working with ownership to carve an agreement" (N.Y. POST, 9/29). FLORIDA: In Miami, David Neal notes that you do not "shoot yourself in the foot then scream 'Medic!' You slap a field dressing on there": "Which is why Bettman is failing the NHL as field officer by calling for a lockout and rationalizing it by saying he doesn't want to end this labor dispute with a short- term solution, but rather one that will help hockey in the long term" (MIAMI HERALD, 9/29). BOSTON: Kevin Paul Dupont offers a positive profile of Bettman and credits him for getting hockey "in the race for the American sports dollar" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/29). But Michael Gee criticizes Bettman and NHL owners for fighting over money that isn't there yet: "Winning back old customers after a work stoppage is difficult. Winning new customers without a product to give them is impossible" (BOSTON HERALD, 9/29). LOS ANGELES: Ron Rappoport writes: "Tell the truth now. Bettman is secretly still working for the National Basketball Association, right?" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 9/28).