The next generation are here, and we’re not talking about players, teams or even players’ teams.
The new generation are now the stars of NHL hockey, and that includes many of the players, coaches and executives in the game.
“I think you’ve got to take a look at a player and think about what he’s been through in his life and what his family and his friends and his communities are going through,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said on Friday.
“When you look at those two things, I think you’re going to have some guys that will be really, really special.
And I’m excited about the future of hockey.”
Bettman’s speech came on the heels of the unveiling of the NHL’s 2020-21 schedule.
The league announced its slate of marquee events on Monday, including the 2018-19 World Cup of Hockey and the 2023-24 NHL All-Star Game, which will take place in Las Vegas.
The schedule, which includes the 2020 All-Stars game and a number of pre-season games, will be unveiled to the public on March 11, 2020.
“There’s a new generation of stars coming to the NHL,” Bettman told reporters.
“They’re going on to have an impact on the game for years to come.
We’ve got some players who are really going to be a great influence on the future generations.”
Bettsman, who will serve as the league’s commissioner for the next 20 years, said the league would be focusing on two main areas for growth.
First, he said, it would be a good idea to expand the regular season.
It will be up to the players to decide whether or not to extend the season, but he said that the league will consider expanding the regular-season to include at least two extra weeks.
Second, he wants to ensure that players have more opportunities to work with the league in the future.
“It’s not something that I want to see the game stagnate, I don’t think it’s something that’s going to happen in my lifetime, but we need to make sure we’re able to accommodate that in the way that we do things,” Bettmann said.
“In the end, if we want to have a really, truly great game, we have to look at this as a whole and make sure that it’s a place where we can make the best of it, that we’re giving all the players that are there the best chance to be able to make the most of it.”
While Bettman made it clear that there are some players that will go on to become great players, he did not offer any specific names.
However, it’s worth noting that some of the younger players are expected to have more impact than some of their older peers, like Connor McDavid.
“We’re going with a couple of young players that have really stepped up,” Bettmen said.
“And we’ll look to see what kind of impact they have.
We’ll take a little time, a little bit of time, and a little while and see where we go.””
I’m really excited about this next decade of hockey,” said Dallas Stars forward Jason Spezza, who has already become a regular on the NHL team’s official Twitter feed.
“It’s the next step in the evolution of the game.”
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