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Daly addresses future KHL exhibitions, Premiere

Thursday, 10.07.2010 / 1:36 PM / 2010 Compuware NHL Premiere

By Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

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Daly addresses future KHL exhibitions, Premiere
NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly addressed the potential of future exhibition games against KHL teams as well as the future of the NHL Compuware Premiere series.
HELSINKI -- NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly has read the stories and heard the concerns from Paul Maurice, Eric Staal and others associated with the Carolina Hurricanes about how SKA St. Petersburg approached the exhibition game Monday night in Russia.

Staal and Maurice said they felt the SKA players were making pointed attempts to take out Staal's knees in the first period and early in the second. As a result, Maurice pulled his captain from the game with 13:26 to play in the second period. At the same time he also pulled No. 1 goalie Cam Ward.

Daly said in a press conference prior to the 2010 NHL Compuware Premiere game between Minnesota and Carolina on Thursday that the League still has to evaluate the potential for future games against Kontinental Hockey League teams before agreeing to send teams to Russia again.

"I don't think it'll affect our relationship with the KHL generally, but it is something we're going to have to take a look at on a going forward basis," Daly said. "The approach to the game taken by the two teams was obviously a little different. The Carolina Hurricanes treated it as an exhibition game to prepare for their regular season. I think the St. Petersburg team approached it a little differently. That can create some issues and we have to look at that going forward.

"We certainly don't want to create an environment where there is a higher risk of injury for our players. If we make a determination that there is a higher risk of injury for our players in the game we probably won't play them again."
-- NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly on NHL clubs playing against KHL teams

"We certainly don't want to create an environment where there is a higher risk of injury for our players. If we make a determination that there is a higher risk of injury for our players in the game we probably won't play them again."

As for the future of the NHL coming to Europe for Premiere games, Daly said the four-year experiment, which started with Los Angeles and Anaheim in London, has been a success and he believes the League will return to Europe to open the season next year as well.

"I would anticipate we'll have games in Europe next year," Daly said. "That's something we have to decide with the players association. They have some views on what we should be doing, so when they have their full leadership in place I'm sure we'll sit down with them and discuss the experience, throw it around and decide what we'll do. I think the extent that it's been an experiment, I think we've been very pleased."

Daly said he is particularly pleased with the Helsinki market.

"We're thrilled with Helsinki," he said. "The feedback has been very positive. We've been treated in a first-class manner. It's a beautiful facility and a beautiful city. We couldn't ask for more in terms of the cooperation we've received and the support we've received. I would anticipate that we will come back to Helsinki."

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl
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