NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman Addresses Mailloux Eligibility & Tanking

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addressed a few key points the other day on the potential eligibility of former Montreal Canadiens' first round pick Logan Mailloux and the thought that teams are tanking for the number one overall pick.

On the eligibility of Mailloux, Bettman said, "We haven't dealt with that issue because we haven't been asked to. We'll have to evaluate his situation if and when the Canadiens decide they want to bring him up to the NHL level and we'll have to take a good, hard look. I do think that at some point, and in some circumstances, with some people, when you make a mistake, there's a chance of redemption and rehabilitation. But we'll have to evaluate that on a case by case basis. But the short answer for you is it's not an issue for us yet to consider."

He has been consistent in dealing with situations on a case by case basis, as some players get a second chance while others aren't allowed to play in the NHL ever again.

Bettman also addressed the potential of teams tanking since this year's prize at the draft is Connor Bedard who looks to be the next franchise player in the NHL The commissioner said, "Nobody tanks because we have a weighted lottery. You're not going to lose games to increase your odds by a couple of percentage points. That's silly. And frankly, suggesting tanking, I believe, is inconsistent with the professionalism that our players and our coaches have. Nobody tanks. Our players and our coaches do their best to win. And again, just because you may finish with the worst record in the league you've got something like a 75 percent chance that you're not going to get the first pick."

Bettman is right on the money with some points, but choosing to be ignorant to others. He's right that players and coaches want to win because they are getting paid on their performances and their jobs depend on it. But it's not entirely up to them. They can work hard every night, but can just be outskilled and outmatched by who management has on the team. Call it a full rebuild or a tank. Both require the team to sell off good players for prospects, assets, and bad contracts in order to fulfill that goal.

The draft lottery has been a great implementation to keep teams from losing at all costs and it makes the NHL have more unpredictability which is always good for the league.

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