It’s been reported that Gary Bettman has signed an extension with the NHL to continue working as the league commissioner until 2022. This will put him as face of the NHL for thirty years – a figure also reached by his mentor, David Stern.
As others have reported, can confirm that Gary Bettman has another extension as Commissioner of NHL. It would make 30 years at the helm.
— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) January 31, 2016
Bettman certainly has his critics, with many people complaining about the several lockouts, the NHL’s TV deals, as well as his slow reactions to sensitive subjects like head trauma. However, it’s undeniable that the NHL’s exposure, especially in the United States, has grown under Bettman’s watch.
He also is an ardent supporter of the “non-traditional” hockey markets, a fact which possibly influenced the NHL’s decision to play next year’s All-Star Game in Los Angeles, and could be helping Las Vegas with their bid for an expansion team.
Bettman will be 70 by the time his contract ends. He is a native New Yorker, and attended Cornell University for a degree in Industrial and Labor Relations for his undergrad, before studying law at the New York University School of Law. In 2014, Bettman was named “Sports Executive of the Year” by the SportsBusiness Journal. They also named the NHL as “Sports League of the Year” in the same ceremony.