Marty Walsh reportedly in the mix to become executive director of NHL Players’ Association

“The search committee has been actively interviewing potential candidates and remains engaged in the process of selecting a new NHLPA executive director. While the process is nearing completion, we cannot comment further at this time,” according to an NHLPA spokesperson who was specifically asked for comment regarding Walsh. as a candidate.

Eighteen of the 32-member Executive Board would have to vote for Walsh in order for him to become the next CEO. Full membership voting is not required of players. No date has been set for when any vote will take place, though the NHLPA will hold a meeting this weekend during the All-Star festivities.

TSN, Politico, and ESPN all reported that sources confirmed the union’s interest in Walsh’s candidacy.

Fehr is 74 years old. His salary in the NHLPA is believed to be at least $3 million annually.

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Walsh, 55, earns $235,600 as Secretary of Labor, according to US Office of Personnel Management records.

Walsh was earning $207,000 a year as mayor of Boston.

As Secretary of Labor, Walsh inserted himself into the MLB labor dispute last year, making phone calls to the owners and players union urging them to return to the table after the owners locked players out.

Before entering the political sphere first as a state representative in 1997 and then as mayor in 2014, Walsh was heavily involved in business, eventually serving as president of the Boston Building Trades Council.

President Joe Biden has chosen Walsh as Secretary of Labor, with the US Senate confirming his appointment by a 68-29 vote in March 2021.

Walsh’s ties to hockey run deep.

Walsh was 7 years old in June of 1975 and his first of four admissions at Children’s Hospital for Cancer was almost over when Bruins Bobby Orr visited the ward.

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When Orr got off the elevator, Walsh was in such awe that he couldn’t speak. Orr gave him an autographed photograph, which is still in Walsh’s Dorchester home.

Hockey was Walsh’s first sporting love and he had season tickets with the Bruins at the age of 21. As mayor, he said he spent some of his free time in the evenings watching hockey with his NHL package.

The Bruins also represent a personal counterpart to Walsh.

Walsh is an alcoholic, and the path to discovery of his illness began on Sunday, April 23, 1995, at a Bruins-Rangers game at the Garden.

Walsh had been drinking all weekend, as he said in an interview with the Globe in 2017, “I was asked to drop out of a Bruins game because I was so drunk. I went across the street to Harp and started drinking. I fell asleep there, and my friends had to get me out.” .

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The afternoon led to counseling and eventual inpatient treatment, and Walsh has been open to this day about his struggles with alcoholism.

As mayor, Walsh has had two unsuccessful forays into the sport, tying his wagon to both the city’s bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics and its efforts to hold an IndyCar race at the Seaport. The NHLPA’s current collective bargaining agreement does not expire until after the 2024-25 season.

If he were to get the NHLPA job, Walsh would be the second Massachusetts politician in recent months to jump into the sports space. Former Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker is named the next NCAA president in December.

— Kevin Paul Dupont, Matt Porter and Jackie Kucinich contributed to this report.


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