“We have a lot of reconnecting to do,” he said. “We have some fences to mend and bridges to mend, and we’re going to work very hard to re-earn the trust of our fans — even the more casual, newer fans. And we’re going to work very hard to do that. One of the reasons Boomer’s so mad at me is he represents the great passion that hockey fans have, and we all missed our game terribly. Listen, we’re about to have an amazing shortened season.”
Bettman said there’s a “variety of things” in the works to welcome back the hockey faithful, “most of which are on a club-by-club basis.”
The league is also “in the process” of working out a discount for NHL Center Ice, the cable-satellite subscription package which broadcasts all games, and streaming service NHL GameCenter LIVE.
Esiason wanted to see those offered for free. Bettman called it “a good thought.”
“We have partners in that business, so we don’t have the luxury of just giving it away,” he said. “What we’re trying to do is get it to a place where we think it’s certainly a very good offer, but it’s something that the business partners … can live with.”