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NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman Expects Thrashers To Stay In Atlanta

There’s no resolution to the “Balkan” conflict from John Kincade quite yet, but between his claim that a major step forward could happen before Easter and positive words from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Thrashers fans have a reason to rest easy tonight.

James Mirtle of the Toronto Globe and Mail has a quote from Bettman, presumably from today’s TSN Radio interview. It’s positive stuff:

Bettman on the Thrashers, who need new ownership: “I have no expectation other than they’re going to be in Atlanta.”less than a minute ago via TweetDeck Favorite Retweet Reply

There’s no elaboration as to if Bettman means “just for next season” or “until the ownership issue gets resolved” or even “something might happen and I expect for them to be in ATL permanently.” With Bettman, good luck reading anything into any of his comments.

If only someone had a crystal ball to figure out what’s going on. One thing is for certain, though – if tonight is the Coyotes’ last game in Phoenix, that adds some stability to the Thrashers for the time being. As much as I would hate for anything to come at the expense of another franchise, it’s a fact.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.