Florida Panthers forward Kris Versteeg was recently on TSN radio in Toronto where he talked about what he’s currently doing during the lockout. Versteeg was asked how frustrated he was with the current state of the collective bargaining agreement, where he stated he was very frustrated and he felt that “Cancers needed to be cut out, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly and Commissioner Gary Bettman have been polluting the game for far too long.”
When asked if he believed Bettman and Daly should be gone from their positions he stated that he did believe so and that the fans have been left with a bad taste in their mouths for too many years and after this process it would be a good opportunity. He spoke about the fans and how “you need to give them a glimmer of hope heading into the next CBA”, which could be referring to the removal of Bettman from his position.
Also asked about the fans and playing in Florida he responded saying that they need to try to get the fans on their side, not necessarily referring to the CBA talks but more so in returning to games once a deal is finally reached. The players have stated several times that they play for the fans, so his words on this could be evident that they want to continue to do so. Whether the NHL decides to take action on these comments has yet to be seen as this is news is only just now breaking, but one would think based off of its stance of fining players for comments that are not seen as being helping in negotiations he could see a fine coming his way.
Audio for the interview may be found here, and I’ll be sure to update as I can if anything else develops from this story.
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