Linden Speaks Out On Kelly Firing

Another retired player is voicing his disapproval over the Paul Kelly firing and this time it’s Trevor Linden.

“It’s frustrating from my standpoint because this search committee was supposed to be the answer to everything,” Linden told TEAM 1040 Radio in Vancouver. “They spent a lot of money on the search committee, and I guess they hired the wrong guy.”

Linden went on to say that he wasn’t pleased with recent events in the NHLPA, the group he used to lead. Concerned that it may be difficult to find someone adequate to fill the shoes of Kelly and other recently released executive directors like Ted Saskin, Linden didn’t mince words on the radio and seemed to echo many of the thoughts put out by other retired players.

“I guess my main concern is that the executive board – which is the 30 player reps – is made up of a lot of young players,” Linden said. “They get into a room like that and get influenced by someone who’s talking more and louder than everyone else.”

Before anyone starts to wonder why an old coot like Linden would matter in this discussion, a little history lesson reveals that it was T-Dawg who was president of the NHLPA when the players were locked out in 2004 and it was Linden who helped alleviate the suffering in the situation by bringing the two sides to the table.

Much like Jeremy Roenick, Linden is a guy who knows his stuff. His concerns over the youth of the executive board appear bang-on, as the situation with Kelly is being revealed to be a matter more couched in impatience and less in long-term problem-solving.

Where this is all going remains to be seen, but I find it deeply interesting that so many retired players are speaking out on this issue. It is very interesting to see how the new NHLPA appears to be operating and how politics are ruining the overall efficacy of the organization designed to protect player interests.

Posted by Jordan Richardson.

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