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Gary Bettman is about to make a disappointing announcement: he is under pressure


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David St-Jean
June 16, 2024  (1:49 PM)
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Bill Daily and Gary Bettman
Photo credit: TSN

Gary Bettman has garnered a lot of negative attention during the Stanley Cup Finals when a photo of him with a Panthers fan was published online.

A commissioner should never be seen in such a photo, especially during the Finals. It only fuels rumors that he dislikes Canadian teams, and this year, Edmonton is in the Finals.
It's a complete lapse in judgment and timing; it's even a joke for hockey fans in Canada.
Bettman may not be out of the woods yet, as he might have to announce a very surprising development in the coming months.
According to Elliotte Friedman, several player agents are pushing hard for the draft to be reduced from 7 to 4 rounds.
Remember, in 2005, the draft was reduced from 9 to 7 rounds. It could be reduced again. The fact is, few players selected after the 4th round make it to the NHL.
«Among players who don't receive contract offers [after being drafted], very few are early picks. Most are later-round picks.» - Elliotte Friedman

For the Canadiens, if this rule had been in place a few years ago, it would have changed the face of the team. Brendan Gallagher, Joshua Roy, Cayden Primeau, Raphaël Harvey-Pinard, Jake Evans, and Michael Pezzetta would all have been free to sign with any team.
Marc Bergevin had traded 7th-round picks to select Primeau and RHP in back-to-back years, in the 7th round. This speaks volumes about the potential importance of drafting as many players as possible.
Of course, the current collective bargaining agreement is set to expire in 2026, so there are two years left before this rule could take effect, if adopted.
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Gary Bettman is about to make a disappointing announcement: he is under pressure

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