Don Cherry’s never seen Gary Bettman like this before.
The Hockey Night in Canada commentator took to Twitter on Thursday night to comment on the NHL commissioner’s heated news conference in New York City.
“I have known Gary Bettman since he was named commissioner,” said Cherry. “I have never seen him so livid as he was tonight at the press conference.
“He was almost shaking. That was no act.”
Bettman held the conference after two days of intense but optimistic negotiations with the NHL Players’ Association fell apart.
Union head Donald Fehr held a news conference in the early evening when he said the NHLPA had tabled an offer that he felt made real progress to ending the 82-day old lockout.
Minutes later, Fehr spoke to the assembled media again, saying the owners had rejected the offer.
Bettman then held a third news conference where he explained the NHL’s reasons for turning down the NHLPA’s offer and took some shots at his union counterpart.
Cherry theorized on Twitter as to what happened with the owners behind the scene.
“There were owners who I’ll call doves who were against the hawks. The hawks said ok we’ll do it your way and the doves put an extra 100 million on the table and when the association said ok but… The doves turned into hawks themselves,” said Cherry. “I believe the hardliners said to the doves ok we did it your way and the association thinks we are weak..
“Now we’ll do it our way….”
The former Boston Bruins coach then added: “Looks like I will see a lot more of Marlies, Junior and Minor Midget games this year.”