SBD/December 8, 2010/Leagues And Governing Bodies

League Notes

Smith Upset About Appeals Process Of Fines For Helmet-To-Helmet Hits

ESPN.com's Scott Burnside reported NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman yesterday at the conclusion of the league's BOG meetings took "issue with the suggestion that if the cap does go up, it puts more pressure on small-market teams that struggle to get to the salary-cap floor." Bettman: "Actually if the salary cap goes up it means revenues are going up. It means revenue sharing goes up. You've got to look at the system in its totality. It's a little premature for us to be worrying about those things." Meanwhile, Bettman said that the league is "still working through what will happen next fall" with the NHL Premiere series games in Europe "in terms of which teams will be asked to go and how many will be sent." The NHL sent six teams to Europe to open this season, and Bettman "would not say whether he favors the six-team model or the four-team version that had been the case the previous two years" (ESPN.com, 12/7).

TIME FOR A CHAT: NFLPA Exec Dir DeMaurice Smith yesterday said that he "plans to meet soon with commissioner Roger Goodell to discuss the NFL's increased fines for helmet-to-helmet hits and the way those sanctions are appealed." The "high-level meeting, which Smith said would take place 'in the near future,' would address a sensitive issue that has grabbed attention league-wide." Smith said that "of particular concern ... is the appeals process and what he saw as inconsistency in the way penalties and fines -- some as high as $75,000 -- have been handed out" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 12/8).

UNDER REVIEW: The AP reported British soccer "will be investigated by a parliamentary inquiry following concerns about the high level of debt at Premier League clubs and the ownership troubles at Manchester United and Liverpool." The U.K. House of Commons Culture, Media & Sport Committee "will assess whether clubs should face government intervention and look at the regulations used by overseas leagues." The legislators "will examine the structures of the four soccer associations in Britain, with the English FA facing questions about its lack of leadership after the country's failed bid to host the 2018 World Cup" (AP, 12/7).

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