Sunday, December 17, 2017
Tampa Bay Lightning

NHL owners approve labor deal

NEW YORK — Commissioner Gary Bettman got unanimous owner support Wednesday for the pending labor deal, then apologized to those hurt by the NHL lockout and said he isn't going anywhere.

The board of governors met in a hotel and overwhelmingly approved the agreement reached early Sunday, the 113th day of the lockout.

Bettman felt the full brunt of anger, especially from fans, during the four-month dispute. He was contrite in announcing the owners' vote.

"Most importantly to our fans, who love and have missed NHL hockey, I am sorry," Bettman, 60, said. "I know that an explanation or an apology will not erase the hard feelings that have built up over the past few months, but I owe you an apology never­theless."

In his nearly 20 years as commissioner, Bettman has presided over three lockouts. One caused the cancellation of the 2004-05 season, another led to a 48-game season in 1995.

The latest lockout wiped out 510 games. Overall, 2,208 games have been lost by labor disputes during his tenure. But Bettman was quick to call speculation he might consider stepping down from his post or is in danger of being fired as "unfounded."

Players are expected to vote on the deal electronically Friday and Saturday. If a majority of the more than 700 members in good standing agree to the terms, training camps can open Sunday. A 48-game season is likely to begin Jan. 19. No preseason games will be played.

Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman, who forged a Hall of Fame career over 22 seasons with the Red Wings, said he isn't concerned about getting adjusted to the deal because the key issue of the salary cap hasn't changed much.

"I don't see it being terribly difficult," said Yzerman, who retired one season after the 2004-05 lockout. "Over the next year or two the market will readjust, and that will sort itself out."

Leafs fire gm Burke: Brian Burke's brash, outspoken style wasn't a good fit for the new corporate owners of the Maple Leafs, who fired their general manager in a move that stunned many with its timing. Longtime Burke assistant David Nonis will fill the job and Burke will stay as a senior adviser, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment president Tom Anselmi said. Four years without a playoff berth — the length of Burke's tenure — factored into the decision, Anselmi said. But ultimately ownership wanted a different look at the top, he said. Canada's largest telecommunication companies, Rogers Communications and BCE Inc., took control of the Maple Leafs and the NBA's Raptors in August. "Brian … said 'I get it, ownership is changing,' " Anselmi said.

Comments

Joe Smith’s takeaways from Lightning-Avalanche

Could tell just how much Ryan Callahan meant in the Lightning dressing room by hearing teammates talk about his latest injury. Steven Stamkos said he was "sick to my stomach." Brayden Point called him a "heart and soul player." Teammates all saw how ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Lightning journal: No easy answers on replacing injured Ryan Callahan

Lightning journal: No easy answers on replacing injured Ryan Callahan

The good news for the Lightning is that GM Steve Yzerman is hopeful RW Ryan Callahan will be ready to go in 3-4 weeks when his upper body injury is re-evaluated. The hard part, however, is finding someone to replace the veteran wing. "I don’t know if...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Lightning trying to replace ‘heart and soul’ Ryan Callahan

Lightning trying to replace ‘heart and soul’ Ryan Callahan

With veteran wing Ryan Callahan out at least 3-4 weeks with an upper body injury, the natural question is who will fill his shoes?"I don't know if anyone can," coach Jon Cooper said.That's not to say the Lightning (26-6-2) can't win without Callahan....
Updated: 11 hours ago
Q&A with Syracuse coach Benoit Groulx about the Lightning’s next generation

Q&A with Syracuse coach Benoit Groulx about the Lightning’s next generation

DENVER — There might be one team in hockey hotter than the Lightning.It is Tampa Bay’s AHL affiliate, Syracuse.The Crunch has won 10 straight after Friday’s victory over Providence. Why is this important? While the AHL is a developmental league, the ...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Ryan Callahan out at least 3-4 weeks for Lightning

Ryan Callahan out at least 3-4 weeks for Lightning

When Lightning wing Ryan Callahan took a nasty spill into the boards Thursday night, it didn't look good.Turns out, it wasn't. Callahan will be sidelined indefinitely with an upper body injury, evaluated after three to four weeks, per GM Steve Yzerma...
Published: 12/15/17
When you think you’ve got Brayden Point figured out, a surprise awaits

When you think you’ve got Brayden Point figured out, a surprise awaits

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Center Brayden Point is the Lightning’s calmest player, both on the ice and off, according to Victor Hedman.Point’s soft-spoken nature belies his baby face and 5-foot-10 frame. "I’ve never seen him angry before," Hedman said.That ma...
Published: 12/15/17
Ryan Callahan injury makes Lightning win ‘bittersweet’

Ryan Callahan injury makes Lightning win ‘bittersweet’

The Lightning's 4-1 victory over the Coyotes Thursday night still featured the usual post-game music in the dressing room.But there was more of a somber tone with veteran right wing Ryan Callahan's right arm in a sling. Callahan, who got hurt on a na...
Published: 12/15/17
Lightning routs Coyotes for sixth straight win

Lightning routs Coyotes for sixth straight win

GLENDALE, Ariz. — As much as the Lightning has been rolling, it remembered how it lost twice last season to the Coyotes.That included blowing a one-goal third-period lead at home down the stretch, with Tampa Bay missing the playoffs by a point."You l...
Published: 12/14/17
Updated: 12/15/17
Lightning’s Mikhail Sergachev earns more minutes, praise

Lightning’s Mikhail Sergachev earns more minutes, praise

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Coyotes center Clayton Keller is very familiar with fellow rookie Mikhail Sergachev, the dynamic Lightning defenseman. They both were top 10 picks in 2016, Keller at No. 7 and Sergachev No. 9 to Montreal. They faced each other in th...
Published: 12/14/17
Mikhail Sergachev earning trust – and more minutes with Lightning

Mikhail Sergachev earning trust – and more minutes with Lightning

Coyotes center Clayton Keller is very familiar with fellow rookie Mikhail Sergachev, the Lightning defenseman.They both were picked in the top-10 of the 2016 NHL Draft, Keller at No. 7 and Sergachev No. 9 to Montreal. They faced each other in three w...
Published: 12/14/17