The Business of Hockey Institute (BHI) announced today that Gary Bettman, Commissioner of the National Hockey League (NHL), and Bill Daly, Deputy Commissioner of the NHL, will be recognized for their outstanding contributions to the business of hockey through the awarding of the honorary Certified Hockey Professional (CHP) designation.
“I’m honored to receive this recognition alongside my friend, colleague, and confidante, Bill Daly,” said Commissioner Gary Bettman. “The NHL’s growth over the last three decades is a testament to our incredible fans, the hard work of thousands of league and club employees, committed team owners, and the most skilled hockey players in the world.”
“I’m truly humbled to receive this distinguished award with the Commissioner, but it’s been Gary’s leadership and commitment to growing the game of hockey that has truly elevated the business since I’ve been at the National Hockey League,” said Deputy Commissioner Billy Daly. “It is a privilege to work in this game, and at the same time, to work alongside someone I admire so greatly and who has been such a wonderful mentor to me. I give sincere thanks to everyone in the hockey community for their contributions in making this the best sport in the world.”
Since taking his position as NHL Commissioner in 1993, Gary Bettman has been the driving force behind the league’s extraordinary advancement. Under his guidance, the NHL has grown from 24 to 31 teams, with league revenue growing from $400 million to more than $5 billion. The league’s 32nd franchise will debut in Seattle for the 2021-2022 season. Bettman has also been instrumental in improving the visibility of the sport through long-term multi-billion-dollar national broadcast rights agreements in the U.S. and Canada. Under his leadership, the NHL was at the forefront of the changing media landscape through an innovative digital rights agreement with MLB Advanced Media. Commissioner Bettman also introduced a calendar of signature events—including iconic outdoor games (the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, the NHL Stadium Series, and the Tim Hortons’ Heritage Classic)—that have driven fan engagement and sponsor participation to unprecedented levels.
Appointed as Deputy Commissioner in 2005, Bill Daly has been Bettman’s chief consultant on the League’s operation and business over the past 14 years, and has played a major role in shaping the NHL’s current economic framework and international identity. Daly was a key player in the NHL’s collective bargaining negotiations in 2004, which ultimately concluded with a Collective Bargaining Agreement that implemented revolutionary changes to the NHL, including the salary cap. Daly has also lead the NHL’s international growth strategy, bringing NHL hockey to China and back to Sweden in 2017.
“The leadership of Gary Bettman and Bill Daly now presents to the world of entertainment strong ownership, a new generation of facilities, a spectacular competitive product, labour peace, television and social media access, a North American footprint that continues to expand, and a significant and growing international presence,” said BHI Chairman, Herb Pinder, when making the announcement. “It is for these reasons and more, that BHI is awarding this year’s honorary CHP to Gary Bettman and Bill Daly. They exhibit the qualities of management and leadership towards which every BHI graduate should aspire.”
The honorary CHP recognizes individuals who have made impressive off-ice contributions to their organizations that have earned them the respect of their peers in other hockey-related organizations. Bettman, a graduate of Cornell University and the New York University School of Law, and Daly, a graduate of Dartmouth College and the New York University School of Law, both exemplify how high-level, post-secondary education can assist hockey’s future leaders in making valuable contributions to the industry.
Bettman and Daly will receive their honorary CHP designations at the BHI Awards Night on November 17th during the 2019 PrimeTime Sports and Entertainment Conference in Toronto, Ontario, which takes place in conjunction with the Hockey Hall of Fame weekend. Bettman and Daly will also be featured as Keynote Speakers on November 18th. Further details can be found at primetimesport.ca.