Commish: 'A luxury tax will not work'

EDMONTON, Alberta -- NHL commissioner Gary Bettman
reiterated the league's position that it won't consider the
players' proposed luxury tax.

"They claim that will fix our problems, I'm here to tell you
today ... that a luxury tax will not work and it will create a
potential for future disaster in the NHL," Bettman said Tuesday at
an Edmonton Chamber of Commerce breakfast.

Bettman, who received a standing ovation at the end of his
speech, also reiterated that the owners don't have a drop-dead date
for when they would have to pull the plug on the 2004-05 season.

The NHL and NHLPA haven't had a formal collective bargaining
session since Sept. 9 in Toronto, when the league officially
rejected the union's luxury tax-based proposal.

The league has said it doesn't believe in a luxury tax because
it's not predictable and doesn't guarantee cost certainty. On
Tuesday, Bettman called a luxury tax "guesswork."