Catching Up with Gary Bettman: Daring to Be Different Takes NHL to New Heights

December 2nd, 2014 by Adrian Dater Leave a reply »

Gary Bettman apologizes for being a few minutes late for a scheduled 3 p.m. sit-down interview with a reporter at his 15th-floor office, which offers a breathtaking, nearly panoramic view of midtown Manhattan.

He’s just finished off a Power Bar, he says, in lieu of a real lunch. At 62, the NHL commissioner, in his 22nd year on the job, remains as much of a workaholic as ever. On the floor outside his office is a beehive of activity, with numerous glassed-in conference rooms housing people in meetings over various items of league business.

And business is good these days.

A league that just 10 years ago essentially had no guaranteed revenue from a U.S. television contract now has a $2 billion, long-term deal—and a much bigger one ($5.2 billion) in Canada.

A league that just 10 years ago became the first in pro sports history to lose a full season to a work stoppage now has long-term labor peace—though, granted, it took another lockout after that to finally get there.

How did this all happen? Bleacher Report recently visited the Commish to get answers to that and discuss the see ...

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