For those of us who hate NHL work stoppages, how scary is this?
The NHLPA fired its executive director Paul Kelly less than 2 years into the job, on the eve of new CBA talks in 2011.
NHLPA ombudsman Buzz Hargrove told the Team 1040 in Vancouver that he spoke with all 30 team reps and the players didn’t feel Kelly was the right man to “unify and pull the group together and get them all working together. 'Trust and confidence' were the words they used and I think that's used appropriately.”
They admit to having no candidates for the job. A search will begin immediately.
This is either a very bold move or an incredibly stupid one. Clearly the players believe it’s a move that had to be made. If there were any dissenters, they have not gone public with the exception of former player and union worker Pat Flatley who has resigned.
The NHL players have proven historically to have no clue as to who should lead them.
Alan Eagleson went to jail, Bob Goodenow was run out of office, Ted Saskin was canned after allegations of spying on player e-mails and now the chosen one, Kelly, has been unanimously fired. Will anyone ever retire after a successful career running the NHLPA or will all of them eventually have a grenade shoved into their pants?
My greatest fear is that somehow Buzz Hargrove will move from NHLPA Ombudsman to executive director. I don’t know Mr.Hargove and I have never met him. All I know is that as the leader of the UAW in Canada he played a major role in making the auto industry in this country unprofitable and as we have all witnessed, virtually bankrupt.
As someone who makes his living working in the NHL, this is a scary day.
See you at the rink.