Friday, July 22, 2005

Free Bert! (pt. 2)

There is an article in the Province this morning saying that Gary Bettman will extend Todd Bertuzzi's suspension for 10-20 games. This will mean that Bertuzzi will have been suspended for 30-40 regular season and playoff games, and will have missed more than a year and a half of competitive hockey.

Because of his suspension, Bertuzzi missed the Canucks' playoff run, was unable to play for Team Canada in the World Cup of Hockey, was unable to play in Europe during the lockout... but more importantly, if Bertuzzi misses the first two months of the upcoming season, it jeopardizes his chances of playing for Team Canada in the 2006 Turin Olympics.

Wayne Gretzky, Team Canada's executive director for the Men's Olympic hockey team, has openly endorsed Bertuzzi's hockey ability - Gretzky considers him to be one of our country's best hockey players. "If he's playing from September to December, I don't think there's any question about his ability as a hockey player and you can go from there and say that if he's playing well, he'll be part of this team. It's as simple as that," Gretzky said when he announced Team Canada's training and orientation camp roster.

If Bertuzzi is suspended 10-20 more games, then it means that he won't begin playing until sometime in November or even early December. This doesn't leave him a lot of time to return to top form and be ready to represent Canada in Turin.
posted by J.J. Guerrero, 7:28 AM


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