Bettman says Minnesota 'absolutely' deserves an outdoor game

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 4, 2014 - 1:20 PM
hide

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, left

Photo: Carolyn Kaster, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

During a pit stop in the Twin Cities on his way back to New York on Monday, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman spent Monday afternoon touring Target Field and TCF Bank Stadium with Craig Leipold as the Wild owner continued his lengthy effort to bring Minnesota an outdoor game.

“It’s something we know the club wants, that Craig wants and the fans want, and we’ll be responsive,” Bettman said before watching Monday night’s Wild-Calgary Flames game from Leipold’s suite. “I can’t give you a date or a venue yet.”

Bettman said Minnesota “absolutely” deserves an outdoor game, and he called both outdoor stadiums “very, very attractive.”

“The fans, the hockey environment, the weather, this is the State of Hockey after all,” Bettman said. “We’re very focused on Minnesota.”

Leipold has spent years trying to convince Bettman that Minnesota deserves the Winter Classic, which is the NHL’s New Year’s Day signature event. The league held four “stadium-series” games this season at Yankee Stadium, Dodger Stadium and Soldier Field, but Leipold has held out for the actual Winter Classic.

But when the 2015 Winter Classic was awarded to the Washington Capitals, Leipold changed his tune and informed the league he would accept a stadium-series game if it helps the Wild lure the Winter Classic.

Bettman said it’s not an exaggeration to say Leipold ends every e-mail exchange between the two hinting that he wants an outdoor game.

“We talk on a regular basis, and somehow it manages to come up in almost every conversation, too” Bettman said. “Listen, he’s passionate about hockey, he’s passionate about the Wild, he’s passionate about the fans here in Minnesota and he wants to cause something that would be fun.”

Bettman also said that while the NHL hasn’t engaged in a formal process to expand from 30 to 32 teams, “There’s a lot of interest. We’re hearing from multiple groups in Seattle … in Vegas, in Kansas City, in Quebec City.”

Wild still kicking tires on Halak

With the Wild in the market for a goalie before Wednesday’s 2 p.m. trade deadline, the Nashville Predators placed Devan Dubnyk on waivers Monday.

It still seems more likely that the Wild trades for a goalie, and there’s no doubt that General Manager Chuck Fletcher continues to talk with the Buffalo Sabres about Jaroslav Halak. Traded to Buffalo in the Ryan Miller deal Friday, Halak was 24-9-4 with a 2.23 goals-against average this season with St. Louis.

Dubnyk, 27, has had a difficult season, going 11-18-3 with a 3.43 GAA and .891 save percentage with Edmonton and Nashville, although goalie coach Bob Mason is said to be a fan of Dubnyk. The Wild also has talked to New Jersey about future Hall of Famer Martin Brodeur.

Scandella returns, Stoner sits

Marco Scandella’s return from a sprained knee meant coach Mike Yeo had to scratch one defenseman. On this night, he chose Clayton Stoner.

“He shouldn’t expect to just get sat every game,” Yeo said of Stoner. “Been very pleased with his game. We all saw what happened in Edmonton and the way he was able to come back in that game. He’s been a warrior for us. He’s been a physical presence, and we’re going to need him. This is one game. This is a decision we made for tonight.”

Etc.

• The Wild signed 2013 third-round pick Kurtis Gabriel to an entry-level contract that begins next season.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets - LP: J. Familia 6 FINAL
Miami - WP: A. Ramos 9
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 7 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: J. Teheran 0
Boston - LP: B. Badenhop 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: G. Balfour 4
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 6 FINAL
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 4
Pittsburgh - LP: G. Cole 4 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: S. Maness 5
Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson 2 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Turner 4
Detroit - WP: D. Price 12 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 1
Seattle - LP: C. Young 1 FINAL
Oakland - WP: J. Hammel 6
San Francisco - WP: J. Affeldt 4 FINAL
Colorado - LP: C. Friedrich 2
Arizona - LP: T. Cahill 1 FINAL
San Diego - WP: T. Ross 3
San Francisco - LP: S. Romo 9 FINAL
Colorado - WP: L. Hawkins 10
Washington 6 Bottom 7th Inning
Los Angeles 2
Texas 3 Bottom 8th Inning
Kansas City 4
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Buffalo 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
New Orleans 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta
Minnesota 9/7/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Cleveland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Jacksonville 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Oakland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Cincinnati 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Washington 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Tennessee 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
New England 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Tampa Bay
San Francisco 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Indianapolis 9/7/14 7:30 PM
Denver
Utah State 7 FINAL
Tennessee 38
SMU 0 FINAL
(10) Baylor 45
Miami-Florida 13 3rd Qtr 5:53
Louisville 14
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(7) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(2) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(15) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 30 FINAL
Saskatchewan 35
Toronto 12 FINAL
Hamilton 13
Edmonton 13 FINAL
Calgary 28
Indiana 84 FINAL
Chicago 86
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close