Lemieux sends letter to NHL suggesting team fines

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BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Penguins owner and Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux recently sent a letter to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman with a proposed set of fines for teams whose players are suspended.

The proposal comes on the heels of Lemieux's scathing statement last month criticizing the league for, in his view, not handing out sufficient punishment in the aftermath of a 9-3 Penguins loss to the New York Islanders in which 346 penalty minutes were assessed.

In the recent letter -- which Lemieux worked on over some time -- he suggests that a team receive a fine ranging from $50,000 for a one- to two-game suspension to one of its players, to $1 million for a suspension of 11-15 games, with the amounts doubled for repeat offenders. He pointed out that under his proposal, the Penguins would have been fined $600,000 this season because of suspensions to Eric Godard and Matt Cooke.

The fines would be a means of making teams accountable for players' actions.

Bettman today said he would present to the board of governors this summer a proposal to hold teams and perhaps coaches more accountable for players' actions.

Shelly Anderson: shanderson@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1721


Shelly Anderson: shanderson@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1721


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