“It’s a full-contact sport. Our job is to make it as safe as we can without taking the hitting out.”
The concussion topic was the biggest one addressed during the meeting of team owners that was otherwise uneventful, according to those who took part.
Updates were presented about the current state of franchises currently within the process of being sold.
The ongoing Phoenix Coyotes situation is still moving toward the closing of a sale from the NHL to Chicago businessman Matt Hulsizer. Bettman didn’t issue a drop-dead date for the deal to be done, but said the league was willing to keep going forward as long as it appears to be on track.
However, he said the timeframe for that isn’t indefinite.
“The city of Glendale is working toward a sale of the bonds necessary to complete the transaction,” Bettman said. “We’re hoping in the next couple of weeks or so things will be resolved and the franchise (sale) will close.”
Prospective Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula was interviewed Saturday by the executive committee, but that sale is not nearly done.
“No votes were taken. This was just a preliminary step,” Bettman said.
He added that the NHL is not funding the Dallas Stars, and that the team is currently involved with an “orderly sales process with about a half a dozen interested parties.”
With Comcast Corp. completing its acquisition of the majority stake in NBC Universal on Friday night, Bettman said the NHL will soon begin negotiations on a new national television deal with current partners Versus and NBC.
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