Commissioner visits Saskatoon
By Daniel Nugent-bowman, The StarPhoenix
June 28, 2012
WHL commissioner Ron Robison wants to see the rest of the WHL follow in the footsteps of Saskatoon and the Blades.
Robison was visiting the city Tuesday and Wednesday, along with WHL vice-president of operations Yvonne Bergmann and Canadian Hockey League director of marketing services and special events Cole Butterworth, to get an overview of the preparations for the 2013 Master-Card Memorial Cup.
But while he spent most of his time in meetings with organizing committee co-chairs Jack Brodsky and Tim Gitzel, Robison was impressed by the feedback Bergmann and Butterworth presented to him about the recent upgrades to the boards and glass at Credit Union Centre.
The upgrades were first announced as part of the Memorial Cup's legacy project last October, but were unveiled last Wednesday.
"This is a very important initiative," Robison said. "This is something that we'll express strong interest in for all of our facilities."
Robison said he plans to put a recommendation forward at the next arena advisory committee meeting in August, encouraging other WHL teams and cities to follow suit.
He added CUC will become the third WHL arena, following NHL rinks in Calgary and Edmonton, to use acrylic glasses rather than the old tempered panes. The new glass sways on impact to help cushion blows to players' shoulders and heads.
The cost for the upgrades was $350,000. The Saskatchewan government contributed $250,000 and the city chipped in the other $100,000.
"I really congratulate Saskatoon and Credit Union Centre, as well as the province, for taking this initiative," Robison said.
"It'll make it a safer environment for the players and, at the same time really improve the quality of play in that facility."
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