Ian White vehemently made his frustrations known after an informal skate in Troy, Michigan earlier today. The Detroit Red Wings defenseman specifically directed his anger toward NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.
"I gotta be honest; I personally think he's an idiot," White said to The Detroit Free Press. "Since he's come in, I think he's done nothing but damage the game."
"If you think of all the moves he's made," White said, "teams that are all struggling seem to be the teams that he put in places where there's not viable markets for hockey. Three work stoppages — I don't know if he's in control of the owners or what he's saying, but I think it's only seven of the owners that have to agree on something to have something pass. You'd think it'd be at least 50%. It just doesn't seem like they're running a democratic process, if you will."
The players are due to miss their third paycheck in coming weeks. White went on to say that the financial pressure the league is putting on union executive director Donald Fehr won't end the lockout.
"We're fully behind him," White said. "I don't even know if it would really matter who's leading us at this point. Their offers are just so ridiculous. They're trying to take everything that we have away from us. They haven't even put out an offer we could consider in terms of the rights and taking away our contractual stuff … We're behind our leader. I know he's going to do the best for us. But it's on the owners to at least be somewhat fair."
White continued to vent by saying that the negotiations process was ridiculous with what both sides wanted. "I'm biased towards the players," he said, "but you look at our last offer — I mean, we've agreed to come down to 50-50."
"Why should we have five-year limits on contracts and stuff when these are the owners that are throwing all this money out, they're signing these guys to long-term deals, they're trying to circumvent the system that they put in place last time? So they're going to blame that on us? I mean, why can't these guys act like adults and control themselves?"
Maybe someone should have told White that calling the commissioner an idiot was not acting like an adult on his part.
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