NEW YORK - National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman today released the following statement on the passing of former Minnesota Wild chairman Bob Naegele Jr.:
"The National Hockey League, the Minnesota Wild and hockey fans across the State of Minnesota have lost a dear friend with the passing of Bob Naegele," said Commissioner Bettman. "More than 20 years ago, Bob had a vision - to return NHL hockey to the Twin Cities and to ensure that the great fans in the State of Hockey would have a state-of-the-art arena in which to cheer for their beloved Wild. He worked tirelessly, often in the face of long odds, to ensure that his dreams became reality.
"Bob characteristically deflected the credit to others, but in 2008, the NHL presented him with the Lester Patrick Trophy for his service to hockey in the United States. He was passionate about the game, loved his home state and he cared about hockey fans. We will miss him and extend our deepest sympathies to his wife Ellis, four children, 10 grandchildren and countless friends."