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NHL commissioner Gary Bettman’s comments re: Winnipeg Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff during his media availability

Gary Bettman spoke today about what happened in Chicago.

Today the commissioner of the NHL Gary Bettman held a zoom media availability to discuss the entire Brad Aldrich matter. This is taken from his opening statement as it pertains to the Jets GM:

As it relates to Kevin Cheveldayoff, I made clear on Friday that I do not believe he bore any responsibility for the Club’s failure to act appropriately.

There seems to be some confusion – and if I was not previously clear on that, I apologize – but there seems to be some confusion on the point of whether, despite his lack of power, position or seniority, he should have felt free to speak up.  Because of his limited authority and circumstance, he left the meeting believing that this matter was going to be investigated by his bosses, and when Aldrich parted ways with the team, he thought that is what had happened.

Kevin was not in a position either to be made aware of or to access additional information about what was going on after the May 23 meeting and he did not have such information.

Murat Ates of The Athletic Winnipeg with some of the points made during the media availability:

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman reiterates to reporters that, in his understanding, Kevin Cheveldayoff left the May 23 meeting believing his bosses would investigate Brad Aldrich and that, when Aldrich resigned in June, Cheveldayoff believed it was the result of that investigation.

Bettman says that Cheveldayoff was not in a position to know more than he did or to have access to Chicago’s investigation. No words on the NHL’s opinion re: the responsibility to speak up and speak out the moment Aldrich was seen interacting with the team, regardless of title.

Gary Bettman: “Kevin was such a minor player in this.” Says no one else in the report even placed Cheveldayoff in the room. Bill Daly: “It was clear that they talked about an inappropriate relationship” but not necessarily the significance or full details.

Kevin Cheveldayoff and co-owner Mark Chipman were set to speak today but that has been pushed back as co-owner Mark Chipman is ill.

One thing from the availability which was clear was Gary Bettman’s steadfast defence of Kevin Cheveldayoff. He said people may disagree with his assessment as to Cheveldayoff’s role but it is pretty clear he feels that the NHL made the right decision when it comes to the current Jets GM.


For those who want to see the comments from Bettman specific to Cheveldayoff I’ve edited today’s media availability to the opening statement about the Jets GM as well as the five questions specifically asked about him.