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Proteau's Blog: The smell of success

• Wanna know why the public has a difficult time relating to Gary Bettman? Yesterday, in shooting down rumors his contract would soon expire, Bettman said he "doesn't really keep track" of how long his deal runs, adding “it sounds right” that it has four more years to go.

Do you know anyone who doesn't really keep track of his or her employment situation? Me neither. That's a perfect example of the disingenuousness that has plagued Bettman since his stint as commissioner began 15 years ago.

• A NHL agent I spoke to predicted there would be a good amount of player movement prior to the Feb. 27 trade deadline, but still ripped the league's collective bargaining agreement for its ultra-constrictive effect on deal-making.

“I guarantee you there are at least 10-12 GMs in this league who are infuriated over the CBA,” the agent said. “I definitely think you'll see alterations or adjustments to it this summer, at least to allow teams to assume a portion of the salary of the player they trade away. As long as you're under the (salary) cap, why should it matter?”

Good question.

• Thursday's Arizona Republic has an interesting story about Wayne Gretzky's use of smelling salts.

The Coyotes coach, who used the salts as a player, says he still uses them “normally, every game…probably more (out of) habit

than anything."

When informed of the news, World Anti-Doping Agency boss Dick Pound immediately began preparing a news release.

• Now that former NBAer John Amaechi has announced he is a homosexual, the NHL is the only one of the so-called “big four” sports leagues without an openly gay player or ex-player.

And if you want to know why, just hang around some hockey players, coaches and broadcasters. Nobody in his right mind would come out of the closet in this league.



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