“Hockey Hall of Fame-Who Got In-But Why?”
Baseball has Cooperstown. Football has Canton. Basketball has Springfield. Auto Racing has Charlotte.
Hall of Fames, for the greats of the sport.
Sure there is controversy. Baseball entangled in the Pete Rose gambling episode….and the whole steroid era, Bonds, Clemens, McGuire.
Football has witnessed the shutout of Paul Taglabue, many believe the aftermath of the NFL concussion lawsuits and the CTE crisis. And the league is facing another issue now with the public pronouncement of Terrell Owens, saying he’s boycotting his ceremony.
And the NHL has a full blown controversy on its hands now, with this weeks naming of NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.
Hockey will honor Willie O’Ree, for breaking the NHL color barrier in 1958. And 4-time Vezina Trophy winner Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils, gets in.
But Bettman, who gets booed overtime he is in public, is getting booed again, over this vote to put him into the Hockey Hall.
The NHL, under Bettman’s guidance, has rallied economically, with a nearly 4B increase in revenues since he took the job.
They have record setting TV contracts. They have built new arenas. Players are making record setting salaries.
But putting him into Toronto’s hall seems a bit premature. Most of sports leaders, deserving enshrinement, get tabbed for their halls, once they’ve retired.
I’m not sure why there was urgency for Bettman to go in now.
He’s disliked because he’s an American running the sports that is the fabric of Canada. He is dismissed by the Union, which has taken a beating at the bargaining table over years. No one buys into the theory a guy from the NBA should be running the NHL.
And the current issues swirling around Bettman these days, stain his reputation even more.
Bettman’s war with retired players over the NHL’s stance on concussion and CTE brain damage is raging. Bettman has publicly refuted any link despite the CTE found in autopsies of deceased NHL and junior players. To him, the NFL studies of its dead players, mean nothing.
Bettman led the boycott of the Winter Olympics, failing to find a way to do a deal that would allow his own players to play for their own flags.
Under his leadership, there have been four work stoppages, and no one will ever forget, nor forgive, the year they cancelled the entire NHL season and Stanley Cup playoffs.
Hell even World Wars I-II couldn’t cancel a season, but this guy did.
Hall of Fame’s can honor its players, its heritage, but this was a strange vote.
Somebody needs to rethink this. Wish you could have a revote. Wonder is someone wants to explain all this.
This guy, at this time, for what he did. Why?