In Winnipeg, Paul Wiecek notes the NHL is shifting its "strategy from denying the facts of CTE to launching a broadside at the researchers who are doing the groundbreaking and absolutely crucial research responsible for those (inconvenient) facts." The NHL last week "filed court papers" demanding researchers at Boston Univ. "turn over what sounds like nearly every scrap of research they’ve put together on the subject." The NHL’s move here has "nothing to do with science and everything to do with sending a chilling message to the Boston researchers" that the NHL will "make their lives very difficult if they persist in, well, telling the truth about CTE" (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 2/16).
CALLING OUT GOODELL: In San Antonio, Peggy Fikac notes Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick are "teaming up against the NFL." Patrick yesterday echoed Abbott's sentiments from earlier this week on conservative Laura Ingraham’s radio program that the NFL should stay out of politics. He said of Commissioner Roger Goodell, "Does he support boys and girls showering together in the 10th grade? Is that what the NFL is for? If Roger Goodell is worried about our bill, then why doesn’t he announce that next season, every stadium in the NFL is going to allow men in the ladies’ room? I don’t think that would fly with any of the NFL owners" (SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS, 2/16).
FOLLOW THE LEADER? TSN.ca's Rick Westhead reported the NHLPA has "hired a team of lobbyists to fight a proposed change to workers’ compensation law in Illinois that would affect" Blackhawks players. Two NHL player agents, who asked not to be identified because they both have clients on the Blackhawks, said that they would "advise their players not to sign with Chicago if the senate bill is passed." The Blackhawks "signalled their support for the proposed law in a Jan. 27 letter to state senators" (TSN.ca, 2/15).