With the NHL All-Star Game set to take place in Las Vegas this weekend, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman is in Las Cruces, New Mexico, preparing to host a meeting of the executive committee.
The meetings are intended to provide Bettman with an idea of the strength of the franchise he inherited and the talent of the players that are part of his future core.
“I think it will be a great atmosphere and a great opportunity for players to have an open conversation about what we can accomplish and what we want to do,” Bettman told reporters.
While Bettman and his executive committee may not agree with every piece of the plan, the goal is clear.
If Bettman gets his way, there won’t be a lockout, and the players will have a chance to play their best hockey in years.
The league will have to work harder to convince players that they should stay and keep the team intact.
It’s not as if the league has been ignoring the fans, either.
Bettman made it clear last week that the NHL would work to keep fans happy and bring in more revenue.
With the All-Stars scheduled to be in attendance, the NHL has a lot of work to do.
Bettman’s decision on Friday to keep the All Stars from coming to Las Vegas is likely the final nail in the coffin for the NHL.
He was supposed to announce the decision on Saturday, but he didn’t get the chance.
This is the NHL I know and love, Bettman said.
I will be honored to lead this great organization.
The commissioner said he would be willing to stay for a couple more years, but that it’s not likely that Bettman will be around to see it through.
The NHL’s playoff race is a long shot right now, with the Vegas expansion team in limbo.
Las Vegas is expected to have at least three teams in the playoffs, which would make it the fourth most valuable market in the league, according to Forbes.