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Volume 24 No. 115

Leagues and Governing Bodies

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman yesterday at the league's GM meetings said that he "didn't expect the drop in the value of the Canadian dollar to have a major impact" on the '14-15 salary cap, according to Kevin Allen of USA TODAY. Bettman: "Maybe you're looking at a million or two difference in the cap based on where the cap is likely to be. It's not that big of a deal." Allen notes the Canadian dollar is now "worth about 90 cents U.S., and it was worth more than the U.S. dollar a little more than a year ago." Bettman said of the volatility, "The system accounts for fluctuation in currency, which is why we do everything in the computations in U.S. dollars." Meanwhile, Bettman said that there have been "fewer concussions this season, but he didn't provide numbers." In addition, GMs "were updated on the league's experience at the Olympics." Bettman said, "It was more for the benefit of the GMs who weren't over there to get a sense of what took place." Finally, Bettman "shot down speculation expansion was coming soon" (USA TODAY, 3/13).

THE GOSBEE SHOW: Coyotes co-Owner, Exec Chair & Governor George Gosbee said of NHL players participating in the Winter Games, "There's a lot of variables that go into it. I think the NHL will make a decision, which will be best for the players and the league and the owners. While I'm in favor of players playing in the Olympics, I also see the other side of it. That's really all I can say" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 3/13).

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver yesterday said that as the league "seeks to grow its popularity worldwide, technology will be the key," according to Callum Borchers of the BOSTON GLOBE. Silver in an address to the Boston College Chief Executives’ Club of Boston said, "One of my goals as commissioner is to use innovation and technology to capture that courtside experience." The league’s "plan to accomplish that aim includes increasing access to high-definition game video on mobile devices, where Silver predicted a majority of fans will watch in the future." He added that game broadcasts "will feature more audio, as well, enabling viewers to hear what players and coaches are saying on the floor." Silver also said that "beefing up the league’s social media presence is another strategy, with the idea that such networks as Twitter can offer fans 'the equivalent of cheering, yelling, and booing, just as if you were in the arena.'" Silver on his trip to California after taking office last month met with Twitter CEO Dick Costolo and Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg "to brainstorm social media initiatives to boost the sport’s popularity." Silver: "It’s amazing just to feel the energy. Being in the halls of those companies, you could feel this is an incredibly smart group of largely young people who have a view that they’re changing the world. And we want to be part of that" (BOSTON GLOBE, 3/13).

NO TANKS: In Boston, Gary Washburn writes the NBA is "in remarkable shape, save a couple of warts that have become more obvious as the season has progressed." The 76ers have "gutted their roster," and the question is whether President of Basketball Operations & GM Sam Hinkie's "method is blatantly tanking or just rebuilding on steroids." Silver said, "Where I grew up, tanking meant the coach and the players or some subset of that group were intentionally trying to lose a game. I don't think that's going on anywhere in the NBA and I would take action immediately if I thought it was. What is going on is rebuilding." However, Silver "admitted that the same teams habitually living in the lottery ... is perhaps a byproduct of mismanagement" (BOSTON GLOBE, 3/13).