SOUTH BEND, Ind. (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said he has yet to reach out to the Dallas Stars about CEO Jim Lites’ expletive-laced criticism of high-priced forwards Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin.
Lites ripped Benn and Seguin on Friday, telling reporters their play has been “terrible” and saying owner Tom Gaglardi was frustrated as well.
The NHL players’ union called the comments “reckless and insulting,” but Bettman sounded as if he wanted to stay out of the situation.
“We’re never going to condone profanity,” Bettman said during Boston’s 4-2 victory over Chicago in the Winter Classic on Tuesday. “As a general rule I don’t interfere in team dynamics, internal team dynamics.”
He went on to say, “I’ve known Jim Lites for as long as I’ve been in the NHL and I know him to be passionate. I also respect the fact that Jamie and Tyler are terrific players and have done a great deal to grow the game in North America, particularly in Texas. … I think we saw some frustration there. That comes from the fact that people are very competitive and want to do better.”
Bettman made his remarks after announcing the Stars will host the 2020 Winter Classic at the Cotton Bowl in Texas.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)