Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Bell suspension official: 15 games

I reported earlier that former Sharks forward Mark Bell, sentenced to six months jail time for hit-and-run charges stemming from a drunk driving incident in San Jose last September, would receive a suspension from the league and the terms of that ban were doled out earlier today by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. According to this TSN report, the suspension will last 15 games and will be without pay. The NHLPA, however, are vocally against the penalty, seeing "no basis for the excessive suspension Gary Bettman has imposed" on Bell. In my opinion, this is an appropriate length as it was an off-ice incident that Bell is facing legal repercussions for, and it does set somewhat of a precedent in a league where drinking and driving is a fairly significant off-ice issue.

As training camps around the league begin, NHL-related news is steadily picking up. With the Sharks opening up camp today, here's a trio of Sharks-related articles worth reading. First, the Canadian Press announces their preseason Stanley Cup pick, and it's San Jose, with Joe Thornton emphatically agreeing. has begun their season previews and today was the Sharks' turn. This article in particular piqued my interest, not necessarily because of the content, but the author: former San Francisco Chronicle Sharks beat writer Ross McKeon, who seems to have resurfaced as an correspondent, after being let go by the Chronicle. Congratulations, Ross. Finally, the Mercury News takes a look at Logan Couture's chances of making the team this year.

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