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Komisarek excited about Fehr confirmation

This is a Feb. 27, 2008 file photo showing Major League Baseball Players Association Executive Director Donald Fehr appearing on Capitol Hill in Washington before a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing on drug use in sports. The ball is clearly in Fehr's court.A number of NHL players threw their support behind Fehr on the eve of meetings for the NHLPA's executive board. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Dennis Cook

Dennis Cook

Mike Komisarek and Brett Lebda share more than just the Leafs blue line. The defencemen are the team's representatives to the NHL Players' Association.

Saturday, Komisarek hinted that players were nearly unanimous in their election of Don Fehr as the association's new executive director, and that the 62-year-old former head of the baseball union was willing to groom a successor.

Komisarek on Fehr:

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"Before the vote, I think everyone knew that he was our guy. There was no one with his expertise, and his knowledge, and his experience as an executive director. He's done great things for baseball. And the last couple of years, there's been a lot of turnover at the [NHL]A, and I think there's no better person to go in there and sort of settle the house down.

"Our team took a vote, and I think everyone was in support of Don. I don't know what the final vote was, but after 28 teams, I think there was only a handful of guys who voted 'no.' He got overwhelming support from the membership. It's good to see that everyone is on the same page.

"The most important thing is informing the membership what is at stake in the next negotiation, and getting everyone on the same page, showing unity, showing strength. Don went around this fall and met with every team, and I know that across the league, and especially with our team, he left a great impression. Guys are thrilled to have him as our leader.

"One of the things we talked about is that Don is getting old, but he's definitely going to be there through the next negotiations. How long after? No one knows. But if there is a new director after that, I know he's going to show him the ropes, and be a mentor to the new guy."

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About the Author
B.C. sports correspondent

Based in Vancouver, Matthew spearheads the Globe's sports coverage in B.C., and spends most of his time with the NHL Canucks and CFL Lions. He has worked for four dailies and TSN since graduating from Carleton University's School of Journalism a decade ago, and has covered the Olympic Games, Super Bowls, Grey Cups, the Stanley Cup playoffs and the NBA Finals. More

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