TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Commissioner Gary Bettman sees few glaring problems with the NHL as the Stanley Cup Final gets underway in a model Sun Belt hockey market, and he is eager to soothe any worries about two of his league's other warm-weather teams.
Bettman insisted Wednesday night that the Arizona Coyotes and the Florida Panthers are in good shape, downplaying reports of financial troubles for the two struggling franchises.
Bettman gave another cautious nod toward possible expansion to Las Vegas, and he deflected any questions about the possible sale of the Pittsburgh Penguins. He also reiterated his position questioning the links between hockey concussions and chronic brain disease.
Bettman spoke out strongly against reports of problems with the Coyotes' lease in Glendale, Arizona, calling them ''inaccurate'' and insisting the franchise isn't in trouble.