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Cleaning Up the OHL

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This got lost in the lead-up up to the NHL Draft, but intrepid reporter/fantasy hockey cellar dweller Sunaya Sapurji reported on a very interesting story that the OHL is looking to hire someone in law enforcement to monitor things such as draft tampering, hazing, and illegal payouts in the league.

Neate Sager points out, that that announcement came out the same day the London Knights announced they were signing Scott Harrington, the player ranked as the top prospect in the OHL Draft, who slipped to the Knights at 19th overall after swearing up and down that he would be going to play college hockey.

Harrington certainly isn't the first example of that sort of thing happening, but it's probably one of the most brazen examples. The OHL probably shot themselves in the foot as well, by promoting this year's OHL Draft more than ever before, with video packages on top prospects being made available to the public. It allowed the more casual fan to see just how dirty the business of the OHL can be.

As an aside, Sager is also correct that there's nothing necessarily wrong with 16-year-old kids choosing where they want to play, but then don't pretend there's any sort of fairness or legitimacy to the Priority Draft. Go to a system that allows all the kids to choose where they want to play, rather than actively rewarding those that are willing to lie the most.

Anyway, this new enforcement officer should be interesting to watch. Will he actually make or a change, or will it be like the CHL's scholarship program that acts as great public relations, but is ultimately ineffectual, with only about 1 in 3 players taking advantage of the program. Most of the OHL GMs don't seem to think it will be effective. Look at how impotent the NCAA can be with an army of bureaucrats at their disposal. One retired cop probably won't be enough to clean up the OHL.