Jim Devellano is a hockey legend.
The guy has seven Stanley Cup rings three with the Islanders and four with the Red Wings and three Calder Cup rings, all with the Adirondack Red Wings.
He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame two years ago and even has an American League Championship ring with the Detroit Red Wings.
But that didnt prevent the 69-year-old senior vice president of the Red Wings from stepping in a pile of cow dung that reportedly cost the Red Wings a 250,000 fine.
In a wide-ranging interview with Island Sports News, Devellano accused the Flyers of breaking an unwritten rule by signing Nashvilles Shea Weber to a 14-year, 110 million offer sheet.
But when he compared NHL players to cattle, well, that got him in hot water with the NHL.
Its very complicated and way too much for the average Joe to understand, Devellano said in the interview. But having said that, I will tell you this: The owners can basically be viewed as the Ranch, and the players, and me included, are the cattle. The owners own the Ranch and allow the players to eat there. Thats the way its always been and thats the way it will be forever. And the owners simply arent going to let a union push them around. Its not going to happen.
We caught up with former Capitals captain and current New York Rangers center Jeff
Halpern Monday and asked him to respond to Devellanos comments.
I think its disappointing when a former player makes comments like that, Halpern said. I think everyones entitled to their own opinion. People are angry all over the board, from fans to players to management and owners. Hes got the right to speak his mind.
If nothing else, by fining the Red Wings the NHL sent a clear message to other NHL executives: Leave the talking to us.
The Detroit Red Wings organization and the League agree that thecomments made by Mr. Devellano are neither appropriate, nor authorized, norpermissible under the Leagues
By-Laws,NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said in a statement. Such comments are neither constructive nor helpful to thenegotiations.
Those NHL bylaws state that only Daly and commissioner Gary Bettman are permitted to speak to the public on labor matters involving the expired Collective Bargaining Agreement between the players and owner.